|Who me? Cover up sex abuse? I moved the|
predators around to protect the children!
Excerpts from this sordid story:
"According to reports, at least 90 priests in Pittsburgh alone are implicated in the findings. And — a fact largely unknown to the public — Wuerl was named in multiple lawsuits during his tenure there, accused of conspiring to cover up sex abuse. Though often portrayed as a bishop tough on sex abuse and years ahead of his time in implementing 'zero tolerance,' Wuerl's actual history tells a different story."
"The abuse, involving diocesan priests Frs. Robert Wolk, Richard Zula and Francis Pucci, took place over the course of six years in the mid-1980s, and involved sadomasochistic acts with whips, chains and drugs used on two teen altar boys, at times in a church basement or rectory, the boys furnished with drugs or alcohol and passed around among the priests for sex. Although the men were removed from ministry shortly after Wuerl was installed in Pittsburgh, he never went to law enforcement about the pederast ring. It was the family's attorney, F. Peter Dixon, who initiated contact with Bethel Park Police.
"When law enforcement showed up to Wolk's parish to arrest him, he was nowhere to be found; Wuerl had sent him and Pucci out of state, to a treatment center in Maryland (the notorious St. Luke Institute, which routinely showed gay porn to patients and was run by Fr. Edward Arsenault III, convicted and sentenced in 2014 of embezzling $200,000, which he spent on gay lovers). The police had similar difficulty tracking down Zula, as the diocese would not reveal the whereabouts of a priest 'on sick leave.'"
The Grand Jury uncovered evidence of sexual abuse of minors committed by dozens of priests, and, in one case, and aspiring priest, in the diocese of Pittsburgh. This sexual abuse included grooming and fondling of genitals and/or intimate body parts, as well as penetration of the vagina, mouth, or anus. The evidence also showed that Diocesan administrators, including the bishops, had knowledge of this conduct yet regularly placed priests in ministry after the Diocese was on notice that a complaint of child sexual abuse had been made. This conduct was enabling to the offenders and endangered the welfare of children.Just think of it. Wuerl had the gall to suggest the bishops set up their own commission to investigate themselves. This pathetic excuse of a man knows full well that he covered up and moved around predators who raped and molested children. He knows full well that he paid large sums to shut the victims up and continue the cover up. He knows full well that he is guilty of criminal obstruction of justice. #Wuerl'sGottaGo! Not only that but the report shows how the Diocese corrupted the criminal justice system encouraging local police and prosecutors to drop cases. One district attorney, Robert Masters of Beaver County wrote to Bishop Vincent Leonard (Bishop from 1969-1983) saying, "...in order to prevent unfavorable publicity" he had "halted all investigations into similar incidents involving young boys." He wanted the diocese's support for his re-election campaign. How much of that continued in the years ahead?
The evidence demonstrated that the Diocese had discussions with lawyers regarding the sexual conduct of priests with children and made settlements with victims. These settlements contained confidentiality forbidding victims from speaking out about their abuse under threat of some penalty, such as legal action to recover previously paid settlement monies.
Finally, the Grand Jury received evidence that several diocesan administrators, including the bishops, often dissuaded victims from reporting to police or conducted their own deficient, biased investigations without reporting crimes against children to the proper authorities.
The policy of covering-up crimes and moving priests around was systemic in Pittsburgh under Wuerl. Criminal acts were never reported to the police or some information was deliberately withheld. Transfers and return to ministry of predators were common. A third of the accused predators from the six dioceses in Pennsylvania were in Pittsburgh. You can see a list of the accused here. The report gives examples which aren't meant to be exhaustive but provide "a window" showing the world the "crimes [the bishops] permitted to occur on their watch." Wuerl was deeply involved!
"There are multiple instances in the 900-page report where Wuerl is said to have reported priests’ abusive behavior to the Vatican, but also approved the transfer and continued ministry of known offenders.Watch the video below and then read the report here. The section on Pittsburgh begins on page 207. It's sickening! And while Wuerl claimed to be a vigilant protector of the children, he, like his predecessors, was an enabler who covered up for the predators and moved them around.
"In addition, the grand jury concluded that Catholic bishops and other diocesan leaders tried to shield the church from bad publicity and financial liability by covering up abuse, failing to report accused clergy to police and discouraging victims from going to law enforcement."