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New York Archdiocese Publishes List of Clergy Credibly Accused of Sexual Abuse

New York Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan speaks to the media outside St. Patrick’s Cathedral during a news conference following the devastating fire at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris April 15, 2019. (Photo: Catholic News Service/Armando Machado)

On his Facebook page April 26, Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York announced: “After hearing from many of you, including many victim-survivors, I have decided today to publish a comprehensive list of archdiocesan clergy who have been credibly accused of sexual abuse of a minor or who were the subject of a claim, found to be eligible for compensation, made to the archdiocese’s Independent Reconciliation and Compensation Program.”

The Archdiocese of New York published a list with 120 names that ‘have been credibly accused of sexually abusing a minor or possessing child pornography,’ according to their website. The list includes the clergy’s names, dates of ordination to the priesthood and current status. More than half of the men listed are deceased.

All the members of the clergy included in the list that are still alive have been laicized and/or removed from ministry. You can see the list with an explanatory introduction and several graphs here: https://archny.org/list

Credibly Accused

The Archdiocese indicated that the inclusion of a name on the list doesn’t mean it has been proven that the person committed sexual abuse, but just that credible accusations have been made again that person.

In a letter to the faithful, Cardinal Dolan explains that the New York Archdiocese “has taken numerous steps to strengthen and enhance its procedures to ensure that our children are protected and to comply with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ adoption of the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People in 2002.” You can read Cardinal Dolan’s letter here: https://bit.ly/2GBDHMA

According to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ website, the charter is “a comprehensive set of procedures originally established by the USCCB in June 2002 for addressing allegations of sexual abuse of minors by Catholic clergy. The Charter also includes guidelines for reconciliation, healing, accountability, and prevention of future acts of abuse. It was revised in 2005, 2011, and 2018.”

An Ex-Cardinal and Two Bishops 

The best known name on the list released by the New York Archdiocese is that of Theodore McCarrick, who was an archbishop and a cardinal and was laicized last February by Pope Francis after being credibly accused of sexually abused a 16-year-old altar boy when he was a priest in New York. He was later accused of sexual abuse against young adults. The list also includes the names of Bishops John Jenik and James F. and McCarthy. Both bishops have been removed from ministry and their canonical processes are still pending.

The Archdiocese of New York’s statement also indicates that the list will be updated if more information becomes available about new cases.

On February 15, the Diocese of Brooklyn released a similar list with the names of diocesan clergy members credibly accused of sexual abuse against a minor since the 1853. In all, there were 108 names listed in two categories: 67 clergy who had been credibly accused, and 41 clergy who died or resigned prior to a finding of credibility. The accused represented less than five percent of diocesan clergy. About two-thirds of the accused, or 60 percent, were deceased when the list was released last February.

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