The Untold Story: What the Media Refuses to Report in the Cardinal Mahony / L.A. Archdiocese Documents Story

Roger Mahony :: Cardinal Roger Mahony defense

Examining the record: Cardinal Roger Mahony, former archbishop of Los Angeles

By his very own admission, Cardinal Roger M. Mahony, the former archbishop of Los Angeles, tragically mishandled cases of abusive priests from decades past. The devastation to victims has truly been immeasurable – a fact which Mahony himself has acknowledged many times.

However, a recent high-profile article in the Los Angeles Times about recently released court documents from the Archdiocese of Los Angeles only tells part of the story about how Cardinal Mahony dealt with abusive clerics during his tenure there.

The Cardinal's early work to combat abuse

What may surprise most people is that Cardinal Mahony – who, incidentally, was himself falsely accused twice of abuse – has a notable history of trying to take a proactive approach to the problem of clergy abuse.

Mahony became archbishop of Los Angeles in September of 1985, and he was soon addressing the issue of sex abuse. By June 1989, Mahony published the archdiocese's first formal written policies and guidelines for dealing with abusive clerics. In this respect, he was certainly ahead of many of his peers in the Catholic Church and many other organizations who oversee children.

Later, at the national bishops' conference in 1992, Mahony publicly expressed his concern about abusive priests, and he took the role of leading a meeting on the matter, even though the topic was not scheduled for discussion at the conference. Mahony also met with victims later that year.

Then, in 1994, Mahony instituted for the L.A. archdiocese a Sexual Abuse Advisory Board, one of the earliest boards of its kind in the country. It was composed of "priests, psychologists, social workers, attorneys and victims or parents of victims" to address the issue of abusive clerics within the archdiocese. Today, nearly every diocese in the country has a board similar to the one which Mahony implemented years earlier.

The Cardinal removes abusive clerics

Most notably, the policies set in place by the cardinal led to the permanent removal of a number of abusive clerics from active ministry. At least a dozen priests during the 1990s never returned to active ministry after the Archdiocese removed them. ( has compiled an unofficial list of abusive clerics whom the Archdiocese of Los Angeles removed prior to 2002. We have also provided exclusive information about the troubling case of the abusive priest Michael Baker.)

Again, it must be stressed that Cardinal Mahony's record is far from perfect. However, the totality of evidence rebuts the oft-heard and patently false claim that the prelate "let molesters run wild" during his time in Los Angeles.

Yet Cardinal Mahony's failures underscore a sobering truth: When dealing with personnel who abuse children, anything less than a 100% success record can result in devastating consequences. The life of even a single victim is forever altered.

(It should also be noted that over 90% of all of the accusers in Los Angeles came forward in the years 2002 and later in large measure due to "window legislation" passed by the California legislature. The legislation allowed accusers to sue the Catholic Church during the 2003 calendar year no matter how long ago the alleged abuse occurred. Notably, this legislation exempted public schools, where most of the criminal abuse has occurred, and it eventually led to $720 million in settlements from the Archdiocese of Los Angeles just in 2007 alone.)

Jail time? No.

Several observers – including some Catholic pundits – have opined that Cardinal Mahony should be in prison for his actions.

Indeed, even L.A. District Attorney Steve Cooley has declared that "it would be great" to prosecute the Cardinal and other Church officials. But despite wishful investigations and the hysterical claims from Church-suing attorneys, law enforcement has never found a prosecutable crime against Mahony or any Church leader in Los Angeles.

Then there is the double standard

In May 2008, two high school administrators with the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) were arrested for failing to report the awful rape of a young 13-year-old girl by a substitute teacher. One administrator pleaded guilty to the charge, while the other pleaded "no contest."

Where are the pair working now? They are still working for LAUSD – and they have since been promoted!

Meanwhile, one can only wonder what will happen to the LAUSD principal who was criminally charged just days ago for failing to report a teacher who may have molested as many as 20 students.

Surely if these incidents involved Catholic clerics, there would be huge national stories with screaming, hysterical headlines. As it stands now, there has barely been a peep in the media outside of Southern California.

Double standard? As always.

[ADDENDUM, 2/1/13: Check out "Historical Evolution of Dealing with the Sexual Abuse of Minors" by Cardinal Mahony (2/1/13)]

[ADDENDUM, 2/15/13: Hmmmm. Check out this new piece in the L.A. Times which pretty much contradicts how the paper has been portraying Cardinal Mahony for the past decade: "Vatican impeded Mahony attempts to remove priests, files show."]

[See also: "Five Fast Facts About the Media's Catholic Church Sex Abuse Narrative"]


  1. jim robertson says:

    How about you Catholic people handle your own abusive clerics and prelates and the people of L.A will handle our teachers but here's one big, very big difference in cases. Mahoney and Curry conspired to keep predators from the L.A.P.D. by transfering them accross state lines. That's a felony.

    Can you say Rico.?

    • dontex says:

      Jim Robertson – your logic astounds me.  If the way the people of Los Angeles have handled their abusive school teachers is the model for punishment, then the Catholic Church should have been promoting the alledged abusive priests.

      Child abuse is of course a very serious matter, but many of the 'victims' of clerical abuse were in fact not children when the alledged abuse occured.  There is credible evidence from data collected by investigators to indicate that the majority of the cases brought against the Diocese of Los Angeles were not trueful.

      The Catholic Church as owned up to it's problems, when are the public schools going to own up to their abusive employees?

    • dbradio says:

      The corrected version


      Jim, we must thank those with washed brains for posting the standard argument, and one of comparative scandal and failure which is never in good form. Public schools haven't the luxury of a kakistrocatic, monarchical leader. Public schools do not – for long – shuffle child rapists from classroom to classroom in a city, a state, or certainly not around the world. Public schools have no network of those who conspire to spread the evil of ruining children. Torn anal, oral, and vaginal tissue are all reacted to sooner or later within the public domain, in the sacking of the rapist. Rapists go to jail. Benedict could be as aggressive on this as he is on nuns, homosexuals, etc. But, he will not. It would bring so many to the Church, and so many back to the Church. Oh, no. We do nothing but provide 3 hots and a cot for the rest of the evil lives of these pervs and perps and we elevate Bernard Law instead of excommunicating and laicizing him. (Great example!!) Eventually we will be able visit the (entire) VaticanMuseum, since all of us with unwashed brains will walk with our wallets. Hallelujah!!!!

  2. Publion says:

    I am in the process of composing my first comment on the LA docs and should have it submitted in the next few hours.


    In the meanwhile, I would need the following info from JR, who seems to have set-himself up as the go-to guy on the LA docs: I cannot find in the docs a situation where the police were a) actively pursuing a case against a priest and b) the Archdiocese of LA nevertheless sent or kept that priest out of LAPD jurisdiction – reference please? It’s rather a vital point, of course, when tossing “felony” and “RICO” around. Also, when you provide the reference to the particular case/priest, what formal action did the LAPD or LA DA take to get the accused back in their jurisdiction – which is not a hard thing for police to do, after all.

    • mark stolzoff says:

      The police were never pursuing a case, because They never found out about the cases because the church never told them . 

  3. Publion says:

    I have reviewed the documents that are available thus far on the LA Times site, using the link below – which is actually an article, but contains hyper-links to documents from the LA Times’s online document cache. While there are reportedly thousands of documents, only 3 cases are dealt with – using a total of about twenty-five  or so documents – on the site at this point.


    I am going to do a sequence of comments, so that there won’t be one very very long one. In this comment, I offer some initial reflections. Immediately following that, I will put up the comments dealing with the documents available on the LA Times site.


    The LA Times article mentions the LA DA spokesman as saying that they will be reviewing the documents to see what they might find. This indicates that a) they had not been working any cases prior to the document release and/or b) that they had not used their subpoena power to access any of the documents years before this document-release. So one of the major Questions hovering behind and beneath all the brouhaha here is about what the police/DA have been doing for the past few decades in regard to any of these cases – unless perhaps there were no cases that they had initiated (and if so, there could be many reasons explaining that – but the Archdiocese of LA [hereinafter: AOLA] blocking them at every turn in their actively-pursued investigations is not going to be a primary reason).


    The thought comes back about the UK article referring to a police “trawl”, and whether this document brouhaha is actually hoped to (at least partially) serve the purpose of ginning up more (or any) legally actionable material for a fresh round of trials, this time in LA. I think that while this may be one of several purposes to the document brouhaha, it’s not the primary reason.


    As DP notes in the above article, the vast majority of cases in LA arose after 2002 and then after a subsequent window that the State legislature opened in regard to Statute of Limitations problems (although, if memory serves, the window was only valid for non-governmental entities (such as the Church) and not for public-governmental entities).


    Yet, it seems, even after that window was opened a decade ago, the police and DA did not encounter many (if any) cases they deemed Charge-worthy and trial-worthy.


    Further, it is a remarkable thing that so many found the ‘courage’ to ‘come forward’ in such a simultaneous rush. It casts into a different light the psychologically-based assertion that individual allegants come to their courage in their own time according to their own deep and profound interior dynamics. This creates the rather dissonant fact that the deep and profound and interior personal psychologies of numerous individuals suddenly reached a point of fulfillment simultaneously back there in 2002. Which year marked, perhaps by merest coincidence, the opening of the sue-the-Dioceses phase of the Abuse Matter, in which the Bishops and in many cases the diocesan Insurers became – perhaps also by merest coincidence – for all practical purposes a piñata for which the requirements necessary to have a whack were being very significantly reduced.


    I assert none of the foregoing to be ‘dispositive’ of any particular allegation, but there it is.


    And again, while 2002 hugely lowered the bar for anybody wishing to make an allegation and civil claim, it did not seem to do the same for law enforcement and criminal cases. I say this to mitigate the role (or non-role) of law enforcement in these matters during the period covered by the documents here: the police and DA may simply and soberly have decided that there really weren’t many valid cases upon which to bring a prosecution. (But at this point in time, it wouldn’t be politic for them to say that overtly; thus we get some very careful comments to the effect that they are looking at the documents, but nothing more substantial than that.)


    I also note that the documents in the 3 cases on the LA Times site, as you shall see, all date back to the early or middle 1980s, now anywhere from a quarter-century to thirty years ago. I reiterate my point made several times in prior comments on this site about the experience of MADD back in the 1980s: they pointed out that instances of drunk-driving or cases involving drunk-drivers had been handled with insufficient rigor and robustness in the decades from the invention of the automobile to the 1980s and they wanted to change that.


    But they did not cast their net to then demand the abolition of the law enforcement and judicial systems that for so long hadn’t done things the way MADD wanted to see them done for the future. They did not mount wide and extended campaigns to impugn the validity or integrity of the police, prosecutorial and judicial systems on the basis of some assertion to the effect that ‘their past decades of slack handling has proven clearly that police and prosecutors and judges do not deserve our respect and should be abolished’. And this – I have always said – raises a vivid and thought-provoking counterpoint to the public career of the Catholic Abuse Matter, where precisely such assertions are constantly being put forth: the Church – by its handling of matters in a prior era – has proven itself no longer worthy of credibility or even in some cases of existence. I have never seen a coherent and rational and sufficient explanation as to why the Church has been approached so differently in the Abuse Matter from the legal system and all its sub-systems in the Drunk-Driving Matter. My own thought is that this rather striking difference is accounted for by the agendas of other ‘special interests’, about which I have commented many times before on this site.


    So those are my initial thoughts. I am continuing to type up the comments on the specific documents in the matter of the 3 individual priests and they should be submitted within the next couple of hours.


  4. Publion says:

    I re-publish at the bottom of this comment the link to the LA Times article that has the various links to relevant documents.


    The first instance in the document cache is simply a letter from Cardinal Mahony. The above TMR article handles it well enough.


    Then we come to the case of then-Fr. Michael Baker, laicized in 2000. Baker’s matter is discussed in the link given in the above article; he lied when confronted by the Cardinal and denied that any of the victims – whose identities the Cardinal sought – were identifiable or locatable.


    The core document here is a Memo to the Cardinal dated June 22, 1987. The AOLA staffer observes that a psychologist in CA would have to report any matters Baker discussed with him/her, and therefore it would be advisable to send Baker to another state for psychological evaluation and treatment. It also suggests that if Baker can be sufficiently rehabilitated, ministry not involving children might be an option.


    I would make the following observations. First, there was no police investigation going on at that time (as best I can determine). Second, there was – to the best of the Cardinal’s knowledge – no identifiable victim who could be located for therapy (which process would have also opened a door, possibly, to the parents themselves going to the police). And in that same area of concern, sending somebody for therapy to a near-by state did not substantially undermine either a) an ongoing police investigation or b) the possibility of CA law enforcement getting the suspect held for questioning or brought back to CA if the suspect were formally Charged.


    As best I can determine, at no time was there a situation where the police actively were seeking Baker and the AOLA was ‘hiding’ him or preventing the police from exercising their substantial authority to get at him (he was not only still within US jurisdiction but in a near-by Southwestern state).


    As to the thinking behind the AOLA position about sending him out of state for therapy, I would remind readers of the tremendous and difficult consequence of certain sex-offense related laws that began to be enacted in that era of the 1980s: once you made it mandatory for a clinician (psychologist, psychiatrist, or assorted and variously-defined counselor-types) to report any patient who discussed sex-offenses in therapy, then whatever the good intentions of the law, it had the inevitable consequence of deterring persons thus-afflicted  from entering therapy or of fully discussing their issues in therapy. Consequently, the laws set up a situation where the very persons most in need of clinical intervention were deterred from seeking it. I am not making a judgment here on whether the cost/consequence was worth it when balanced against the public-prosecution interests of the State, but there you have it.


    I would also point out that the state-of-the-art in assessing and comprehending sex-offenders was still rather primitive in that era, especially with reference to what we could call today the genuine and clinically-defined ‘pedophile’ (not at all the same usage as the term is often tossed around by numerous internet commenters, even on this site). Unlike most types of sex-offender, the genuine ‘pedophile’ does indeed exhibit an inability to effect and sustain rehabilitation and that type of sex-offender does demonstrate – as opposed to other types of sex-offenders – a noticeable tendency to recidivism. As the clinical knowledge has now evolved, today when dealing with the possibility of a sex-offense against a child (defined clinically as a pre-pubescent), then the possibility of dealing with this almost-intractable behavioral pre-disposition dictates very robust and sustained inquiry on the part of any Ordinary (or any superior in any organizational setting).


    Baker was laicized (the result of formal canon-law procedures) in 2000. The LA Times notes that Baker subsequently in 2007 pleaded guilty to abusing two boys (it is unclear when the abuse took place, in 2007 or at some earlier date, before or after his laicization). But Baker had been laicized before that. I also note that it is not stated in the document or the LA Times write-up that Baker pleaded guilty to ‘rape’; and I say this in light of some consistent and ungrounded assertions from various commenters – even on this site – about “child-raping” priests. From the LA Times or the documents themselves, there is no indication of ‘rape’, the high-end of the spectrum of sexual abuse. My own thought would be that if Baker had pleaded guilty to rape the LA Times would have been alert to that and pointed it out clearly. ‘Abuse’ – never to be considered acceptable – nonetheless comprises a very broad definitional spectrum.


    This is not to say that Baker was handled then as well as he might be handled now. As the spirit of the Dallas reforms has taken hold, Ordinaries are advised not to exercise such latitude in accepting the ‘word’ of a suspected abusive-priest. And I think that is good. But I also point out that at the heart of the Bishop-priest relationship there has always been something of a parental responsibility on the part of the Bishop (which conflicts with the current American tendency to view the Church purely or at least primarily as a corporate organization like any other large US corporation).


    Mahony is on record as having said in formal written public statements that the handling of Baker’s matter was the one he most deeply regretted. He is correct – in my opinion – in that assessment.


    Those are my thoughts on the Baker matter.

  5. Publion says:

    I re-publish at the bottom of this comment the link to the LA Times article that has the various links to relevant documents.


    Next is the case of Fr. Michael Wempe, who does not appear on TMR’s list (linked-to in the above article) of AOLA priests removed from priesthood.  The documents do not indicate what happened to Wempe in terms of his later priestly ministry or further career.


    He was convicted in 2006 on one Charge of ‘abuse’ but – according to the LA Times commentary – admitted to (some form of) “abuse” of thirteen “boys” (ages not given) over a period of thirty-six years.


    The primary document carries the date of June 25, 1987. It is a quarter-of-a-page, clearly part of a larger document, apparently notes written up by a ranking AOLA staffer after speaking to Wempe’s clinician-therapist.


    It mentions that Wempe has been in therapy for seven years, but that he has “totally finessed his way through” it all; that “he lied to the psychologist” ; and that (apparently in the characterization of the staffer) “has been involved with minors and – presently involved with a 12 year-old – surrogate father but also sex-partner”. The staffer then notes “pre-sexual – very serious”.


    It strikes me that as opposed to now-conventional assertions that the Church was blithely running a “culture of rape” all along, this Memo indicates high-level awareness that Wempe has a serious problem, especially in light of his predilection for children; the age here meets the qualification for the formal clinical parameters of ‘pedophilia’.


    There is also a Memo from the staffer, one Msgr. Curry, to the Cardinal, dated November 22, 1987. In the memo, Curry notes that Wempe was concerned about the confidentiality of the psychological reports about him. (This, as I alluded to in my preceding comment on the Baker case, has always been a difficulty in these types of matters: how balance the therapeutic need for a safe forum in which the patient can fully and deeply address problems with the State’s interest in pursuing prosecution or the civil tort process’s interest in obtaining material for a lawsuit?)


    Hence Msgr. Curry assures Wempe that concerning the therapy records there was, “from a personnel point of view” some level of protection. But Curry then immediately goes on to say that were any criminal prosecution ever to result, it would actually not be in Wempe’s interest to have no records whatsoever of his therapy (Wempe had wanted all his therapy records destroyed). What we do not see in this document is AOLA conspiring with Wempe to destroy incriminating records; indeed, Msgr. Curry (perhaps rather shrewdly) puts it to Wempe that the records need to be preserved for Wempe’s own good, in the case of any possible criminal investigation (of which, clearly, there was none underway at the time).


    Curry then notes a discussion with Wempe to the effect that what he did constitutes criminal activity in CA. Wempe had described his activity as “sexual touching” and “cuddling”; while such activity is clearly evidence now – and was back then – of some serious need for therapy (and perhaps a reading of the Riot Act), it is possible that Wempe was not aware of how even “cuddling” had now come under the purview of sex-offense laws as they and the definitions and parameters of proscribed activities were beginning to expand. I would also note that “cuddling” nowadays might most likely qualify under that capacious term “abuse”, for criminal law purposes. Clearly, any adult who needed to “cuddle” with a 12 year-old is in need of some serious therapy, and any priest even more so.


    This particular bit of the document also makes me wonder precisely what Wempe had described in his actions with the 12 year-old boy whom Curry then characterized as a “sex-partner”. If Wempe had – in the instances for which he was receiving therapy – been discussing something akin to “cuddling” and “sexual touching” then Curry’s characterization of the boy thus being a “sex-partner” may have been an overstatement of that situation. Hard to say and that’s what trials are for, but there are gaps here and it’s clear (as any historian could tell you) that simply having possession of historical documents doesn’t always resolve every question you had in your mind when you picked up the document, and indeed having read the document you may wind up with more questions than you had when you started.


    Curry then notes that according to Wempe all the boys that had been involved were (in 1987) over the age of 21. In the 1980s, the idea that victims by and large needed lots of time – years and maybe decades – before they could go to the police had not been tossed out into the public forum; nor except in unusual cases would it be something of clinical note. A 21 year-old could in that era been quite reasonably imagined as perfectly capable of going to the police. As a matter of fact, in Curry’s mind that would have had to have been the factor that would have triggered police involvement.


    So what we do not see here is the AOLA or its senior staff sitting together with a priest in the full and certain knowledge that a criminal investigation was or soon would be underway, and discussing specific tactical moves necessary to obstruct or avoid that investigation. And even more so, what we do not see here is any scintilla of evidence or attitude to the effect that Wempe could be sent to another parish somewhere to continue having his issues there.


    Curry then notes that he advised Wempe to seek more specific advice from a criminal lawyer, as to the possibilities that might arise and of Wempe’s liabilities under applicable CA law. A perfectly rational bit of advice.


    And Curry then notes that he thought it curious that the CA therapist whom Wempe had previously seen had not reported him to authorities. This is interesting indeed. I am not familiar with the specifics of the CA professional reporting-laws applicable at the time this document was written, but I will assume here that therapists and clinical providers were included (whether the Church was so included is another question and I am thinking that in 1987 it was not). Which seems – to me – to indicate the possibility that a qualified and State-certified CA clinical provider had professionally decided that Wempe’s “cuddling” did not rise to the level of a reportable-crime under applicable CA law. Clearly the therapist/clinician was not pressured by the Church because if that had been the case then Curry would not have been surprised.


    And that impression is further reinforced by the fact that Curry then suggests to Wempe that Wempe not return to that therapist. Had the therapist been under the sway of the Church, Curry would not have made such a suggestion.


    Curry then goes on to say “we discussed” the possibilities of Wempe getting a psychiatrist who was also a lawyer so that whatever Wempe said to that dual-professional would be under the still-inviolate seal of attorney-client privilege. This is a rather outré imagining: such a magical beastie as a lawyer-psychiatrist is very very rare on the hoof. And clearly a police investigation or criminal prosecution would rely on more evidentiary material than whatever Wempe himself said, so the ‘privilege’ wouldn’t do all that much good.


    My thought is that here Curry was simply humoring a somewhat fantastical surmise on the part of Wempe, promising him to “investigate such possibilities”. But clearly, what we do not see here is Curry either proposing such an oddball idea to Wempe, or Curry conspiring with Wempe to somehow find such a magical creature for the purposes of evading or confounding or obstructing a police investigation (which at that time did not exist in the first place).


    There is also a letter from Mahony to Wempe while the latter was in therapy, offering prayers and assurance of his good wishes and support to Wempe and all the other priests in therapy at the facility. The LA Times uses its highlighting ability to outline the sentence containing that assurance of prayers and support. Why it did so I leave up to the readership to wonder.


  6. Publion says:

    I re-publish at the bottom of this comment the link to the LA Times article that has the various links to relevant documents.


    We come to the third and final priest, Msgr. Peter Garcia. The TMR list hyperlinked in the above article notes that he resigned the priesthood in 1989 under the prospect of Cardinal Mahony formally requesting the Vatican to effect his laicization.


    The first document, dated November 27, 1984, is a formal psychological report of assessment on Garcia who was sent to the New Mexico facility at the request of AOLA.


    He was there for having admitted to “sexual involvement” with three “boys” (no ages given) with a family that he was helping. Clearly this man had violated priestly responsibilities by – as it were – combining business with his own gratification. I placed the quotation marks around the above terms because I am not sure what actions constituted the “sexual involvement” and whether the ages of the three youths involved indicated formal clinical pedophilia parameters or not. Garcia, the report continues, had admitted to having occasional similar lapses since ordination in 1966.


    It also notes – a significant warning sign – that he had been “reported” once before, in 1980, had entered therapy, but that the therapy had only lasted for six months.


    The report lists the many tests administered to him, according to best-clinical practices at that time. The report concludes with the recommendation that he attend the extended (in-house, I would imagine) therapy program at the facility.


    In a second document, dated October 7, 1987, a facility report describes Garcia’s recounting of various experiences, and of his ‘modus operandi’ in approaching and facilitating these relationships.


    The key point is the assessor’s statement that Garcia “has a rather thin understanding of the harm he may have caused”. This is a key element in so many cases of abuse in any context and any era: abusers really don’t grasp the possibility of causing damage (which is not to infer that I fully support the idea that the very least such experience can regularly cause the total derangement of a life, a trope much favored by tort attorneys – and understandably so – in making their case in a lawsuit). There is an element here of what might have been termed in the old days “moral imbecility” and it should have been caught by superiors somewhere along the line in his seminary training or early ministerial career. Of that I have no doubt whatsoever. The implementation of the Dallas reforms, presumably accompanied by significant increase of seminary trainers’ alertness to these issues, should preclude repetitions of this, especially with Ordinaries now also more acutely alert to this type of derangement in a priestly-candidate.


    (I would add here that precisely the reason the Church has hemmed sexual experience with so many warning-flags is that – following i)the early Church’s deep revulsion at the profound decadence of Imperial Roman society in regard to its sexual mores, and ii) Augustine’s deep revulsion at his own pre-conversion lusts and iii) Aquinas’s concerns about the integrity of the human being residing in its conformity to the Image of God and the Purpose/Goal of human sexual activity – the Church has always understood sexual-activity to be somewhat like nuclear-energy: great stuff when it’s used properly, but hugely dangerous and unpredictable in its consequences when not used properly. It is always interesting to observe that especially since the 1960s the general American tendency has been to consider sex as a recreation and its frequent and free deployment as a necessity for ‘fulfillment’, rather than as the deployment of a tactical nuclear device; and yet the Church is so often criticized for being so fuddy-duddy about the purportedly wondrous benefits of free and frequent deployment of the sexual capacity. But then I would also say that priests need – as they are nowadays hopefully receiving – far more effective training in the command-and-control (as they say in the military) of their own sexual capabilities. It’s also – in my opinion – better to admit candidates to priesthood later in life, when human biology isn’t working ‘against them’, so to speak, as much as it does when they are younger.)


    In another document, dated July 22, 1986, Cardinal Mahony writes to the Director of the facility where Garcia is receiving treatment that he – Mahony – would not consider it advisable for Garcia to return to California “for the foreseeable future” since the parents of two of the young men with whom Garcia was involved have “switched attorneys several times” and there is some possibility that civil or even criminal process could ensue. The LA Times highlights this as a key statement.


    I have several thoughts about this.


    First, there is no way that Garcia could escape legal process, whether he was in-state or out-of-state – and that would have been as clear as a bell to Mahony and his AOLA legal advisors. Nor do I imagine that if formally asked, the AOLA would have told authorities that Garcia was nowhere to be found, or that they would ‘hide’ him. So this statement of Mahony’s can hardly be considered a conspiratorial plot or plan to effectively foil legal process consequent upon Garcia’s activities with the two young men.


    Second, it is crystal clear that the two young men and their parents were quite ready to take matters to official levels – although in this case, it would appear that this meant shopping for tort-attorneys rather than going to the police. Nor do I consider it credible that the ‘victims’ were ready to take their case to a lawsuit but still didn’t have the ‘courage’ to go to the police (or perhaps they had gone to the police and the police or DA had declined to prosecute). Keeping Garcia away from the possibilities of encountering these persons and exacerbating matters would not constitute conspiracy to obstruct justice (although it is clear from the text that no formal legal process – civil or criminal – was underway at that time).


    Third, it is hardly impossible that Mahony is not here broaching a suggestion he came up with all on his own. Rather, it may well be an official statement of his position, put onto AOLA letterhead and sent to the Director, which the Director could then use when talking to Garcia who – as the Director may previously have advised Mahony – was making noises about finishing up and coming back to LA. In other words, this was Mahony’s way of supporting the Director in either squelching Garcia’s voiced desire to finish therapy or else to start bringing Garcia down gently from a desire that had now become an impossible pipedream: coming back to LA and picking up where he left off or picking up the threads of his life as if nothing had happened.


    There is at this point a link in the LA site to a document characterized as “Letter from Msgr. Curry to Mahony about relocating Garcia”. I cannot get that document to open, no matter how many times I click on it. If I  can get this document to open, I’ll see what it says.


    There then follow a number of letters from an impressively concerned and forthright parish priest to an AOLA auxiliary bishop insisting that Garcia be dealt with and that the Bishop has let him down here in not ensuring more robust action. The priest is tremendously to be admired for his efforts in this. He apparently also used all of his energies to get the parents of the boys in his parish (not, as far as I can make out, the same parents and the same boys as above-referenced) to support him but they would not agree (casting a curious light on the conventional assertion that Catholics always listen to their priests as if they were “kings” – in fact ,to read this parish priest’s letters, I think you’d have to be very deliberately determined  indeed to say No to him).


    But there is no doubt in my mind that Msgr. Garcia should not have remained in ministry.


    Those are my thoughts on Garcia. While I would most surely have liked to see him handled more robustly at an earlier date, I don’t see in the documents here any smoking-gun justifying the various claims and assertions that are to be found on various sites in comments or articles or commentary about the LA documents.


    Later on I will put up a summary of my overall impressions. I’m typed-out at the moment and need to take a little break. I can strongly recommend readers take a look at the documents themselves, such as they are.


  7. Jay McNally says:


    This article is embarassing. Mahony spent untold thousands, maybe even millions on lawyers and legal maneuvers to prevent the public from knowing what he did and when. It's called obstruction of justice.

    A serious question here: Can you name one bishop who should have been removed from his post for his behavior regarding pedophile priests? Just one.


    • Mark says:

      Nevertheless Jay, you ought to be just as pissed off with the Los Angeles Unified School District as you undoubtably are with the Catholic Church. Mahony deserves to go to Hell, true enough, but so does everyone who throws stones at him. The Bible says so.

  8. Publion says:

    Ah the restorative effects of a good cup of strong coffee!


    My general impressions, lastly, about the documents I have seen on the LA site lead me to say this:


    First, we see once again the effort to ‘make it 198-‘ again. In that sense this document-dump is a revenant, a ghostly visitation of a strategy that has now outlived itself.


    Second, the trick underlying it is to apply the sensibility and ethos of one era (today) to the documents from another era (30 years ago). What happens here is that un-thinking persons will simply and preconsciously presume to judge the past by the present because they forget to keep in mind the vast gap of 30 years separating today from ‘then’. There have been major developments in both clinical knowledge and general public sensibility, and those developments weren’t there back ‘then’.


    Third, the role of the police then and now. There is nowhere in these documents we have seen any indication that the AOLA was actively working to undermine or obstruct any active investigations by authorities. At this point now, the authorities (the DA’s Office, primarily) is tactfully and carefully saying that it will look at the documents as they become available to see what might be there. But a) they have always had subpoena authority and perhaps they have already exercised it and seen some of these documents already or are familiar with their content (and perhaps had already also concluded that there was and is no basis for a prosecution). And even if b) they find material against any of the priests already out of ministry about any crimes committed decades ago while they were still in ministry or committed after they had left ministry (by whatever means that was effected), I can’t see from these documents that they are going to have grounds for Charging the AOLA for conspiracy to obstruct or even for the always-favored ‘shuffling’ claims we so often see.


    And this is especially so if we factor out of the ‘shuffling’ dynamic a priest accused, sent to therapy, sent for a single second-chance, and who fails again – subtracting those attempts, there are probably no more than a handful (if any at all) of seriously deranged priests who were moved-around as a matter of course, and none of those will have been ‘shuffled’ for the express hierarchical purpose of enabling further depredations as part of a general  and jolly ‘culture of rape’ rampant among the priesthood and abetted approvingly by the hierarchy. And while even a single such deranged priest is too many, the idea cannot be seriously entertained that there is that “culture” of deliberate and conspiratorially sustained rapine and that consequently the Church has demonstrated herself to be nothing more than a millennia-long criminal sex racket is unsupportable, except as a cartoon.


    Fourth, the priests here were all removed by some form of self-initiated Church action (and not, say, by police action) even if that action took longer than nowadays would be deemed acceptable. These documents clearly indicate that the AOLA in the 1980s was addressing the issue according to its best lights, however much organizational inertia or the different sensibilities of that era might have slowed it down. Again, to judge 1983 in hindsight from the vantage point of 2013 is more than a bit of a scam.


    Fifth, I strongly submit that if any organization’s performance from 30 years ago was subjected to this scrutiny of its internal documents, there would be some questionable or doubt-inducing passages to be found. But again, as any historian knows, any historical document itself – barring any clear and overt and unmistakable evidence (and these LA documents here yield no such ‘easy’ evidence) – is not going to be sufficiently understood unless it can be placed into the dynamics that gave rise to the document. What was the writer thinking, intending, and/or responding to? For that matter, I have no doubt that were documents internal to the preparation of – say – the Plaintiff cases in the massive 500-plus claim lawsuit of half a decade ago to be put up on the LA Times site then there would be some rather thought-provoking and perhaps even cringe-inducing conversations and discussions and proposals upon which the public might drop-in.


    Sixth, I can’t see how these documents at all support the type of assertions, claims, accusations, characterizations and so forth that we have seen in comments and commentary, from media types and from the assorted layers of the internet and webverse.


    Lastly, though, I think these documents demonstrate clearly that back then the Church was still insufficiently alert not only to the developing tectonic changes in American society in the matter of sex and sex-abuse, but even more so was insufficiently alert to matters of her own integrity. Because clearly, the three gentlemen who are the subject of these documents were unsuitable for ministry in very profound ways. And yet it is also clear from these documents that – however much time it took to bring matters to a conclusion – the AOLA was aware of the problems and, increasingly, the serious reality of these priests’ unsuitability for ministry.


    Nowadays the claim can be made that there should have been a concern for the victims over and above any other consideration. That sensibility is precisely the development that has taken place in the intervening quarter-century or 30 years. And in one of the cases, there appeared to be no identifiable victims, and none still in a condition – as it was conceived in those days – to be unable to speak up for themselves if they wished to do so.


    And I point out that the Church was also wrestling in its own patch with the problem that bedeviled and still bedevils legislators who seek to create what are called ‘victim-friendly’ laws: there are always unforeseen consequences and/or balancing of concerns that have to be taken into account, lest – like trying to nail down a wall-to-wall carpet with an air bubble in it – you wind up merely stepping on the bubble ‘here’ only to create another bubble ‘there’ (and perhaps actually exacerbating the situation not only for the accused and for public safety and interest but even for the victims themselves). It is for this reason that there is still so much difficulty with sex-offender laws generally, not the least being the latest (2006) federal effort to impose a uniform system of registration and classification-definitions and parameters upon all the States – which has run into so much trouble on so many levels that it functions for all practical purposes as merely a shadow of what it was initially intended to be.


    Perhaps the LA Times is hoarding its documents, releasing them slowly and in a sequence that will intensify as it goes along – i.e. that further documents will actually reveal more clear and acute demonstration of the AOLA’s mis-, mal-, or nonfeasance. Thus that these we have seen so far are the least conclusive of their cache. But if so, those clear and definitive documents have yet to be revealed.

  9. jim robertson says:

    There are none so blind as he/she who will not see. The 25 or so documents are not from our settlement at all but from another case. The "thousands" of documents from the settled cases, my case included, are slowly to be coming out in the next weeks.

    Oh what a tangled web you (sic) weave when first you (sic) practice to deceive. Your conspiracy theroy is a thick tangeled mess indeed.

    Why would I be" the go to guy for L.A. docs"?? Am I a Times staff writer? No. Am I the police or D.A.? No. Am I an officer of the court? Also no.

    What you , just like your hierarchs, missed in all this was and is: the victims.

    No treatment for us. No concern for us. Tens of thousands spent on the known perps and their well being and not one attempt at out reach to the victims. we were left catch as catch can with nothing.

    And you can pretend a 12 year old is not a child?

    [Removed by moderator]

  10. dbradio says:

    The corrected version…

    Public schools haven't the luxury of a kakistrocatic, monarchical leader. Public schools typically do NOT have a worldwide policy of shuffling child rapists from classroom to classroom. Public schools have no world network of those who conspire to spread the evil of ruining children. Torn anal, oral, and vaginal tissue are all reacted to sooner or later within the public domain, resulting in the sacking of the rapist. Rapists go to jail. Benedict could be as agressive on this as he is nuns, homosexuals, etc. But, he will not. It would bring so many to the Church, and so many back to the Church. Oh, no. We do nothing but provide 3 hots and a cot for the rest of the evil lives of these pervs, and we elevate Bernard Law instead of excommunicating and laicizing him. (Great example for the flock!!) Eventually we will be able visit the (entire) VaticanMuseum, since all of us with unwashed brains will be gone. Hallelujah!!!!

  11. Publion says:

    In reference to JR’s of 936 AM this morning:


    I had presumed that since JR was so enthusiastic in prior comments about the LA documents, then they would be from that large 500-plus Plaintiff case of 2006 that he was – he reported – a part of. Also the LA Times articles gave me the distinct and clear impression that this document-dump was a result (somehow; still no clear explanation as to the legal mechanism) of an agreement reached in 2006. But now we are informed that these are some other documents and he is not the go-to guy for them; just – apparently – the guy who gives media interviews about them and waxes enthusiastic about them in comments here. Well … OK then.


    The eptithetical dismissal of my theory without any explanation as to either a) how it fails or b) how his own succeeds is par for the course.


    I was looking at the documents and commenting upon them. I did mention “the victims” as they came up in the documents. I may not have swung into a full-orchestra rendition of JR’s preferred tune about ‘victims’, but I was going with the text of the documents in front of me, not trying to simply use them as an unexamined surf-board for whatever particular melody I like to play. If JR has any analysis of my analysis of the text of the documents as they appear, he is welcome to put them up here.


    As for no-treatment-for-victims, I note that Mahony in the documents sought the identity of possible victims on several occasions, with the intention of providing therapy. I would also observe that once a person formally becomes a Plaintiff, the Defendant cannot fund the Plaintiff without rendering him/her/itself liable to a claim of improperly influencing the allegant/Complainant. I also recall rather clearly JR’s prior remarks that he doesn’t believe there is anything the Church can do for ‘victims’. He can’t have it both ways here: claiming there is nothing the Church can do for ‘victims’ and then complaining that the Church has done nothing for ‘victims’.


    I precisely and clearly indicated in concise English that a 12 year-old does indeed fit the parameters of a clinical pedophilia diagnosis.


    From ‘dbradio’ at 1010 this morning we get the conventional cartoon that the Church runs a world-wide pedophilic (and ‘rapist’) shuffling ring of some sort. Although there is no evidence provided for such an assertion, and such evidence surely isn’t in the documents under discussion here. And as I have often stated, allegations of ‘rape’ against priests constitute the smallest percentage of the allegations made, according to the extant evidence and material, i.e. the two John Jay Reports. (I note here again that organizations such as SNAP have never taken the opportunity to commission their own formal Study, let alone make it available for public review and analysis.)


    The rest of the comment is there for anybody to have a look at.


    I note again that for a numerous subset of folks, we are seeing the dynamic whereby these documents are serving not as sources of analysis and thoughtful review, but rather as unexamined ‘totem items’, to be simply  picked up and waved around – with perhaps a pious incantation or a loud blurting of the conventional ‘certainties’ like magical mantras. This dynamic rather closely demonstrates precisely what propaganda theory (see my prior recent comments on this site) predicts as a successful manipulation at the level of the lowest common denominator.

  12. jim robertson says:

    Your wrong about so many things. I used no curse words this morning. I know many victims here pre settlement who had therapy from the Church while they and the rest of us were suing the Church.FYI

    Honey, you work so hard at all the stuff you write. I wish you were getting paid for so much work. It's the wrong work but it's quite the castle on a cloud and it's not easy to rationalize the irrational. But god knows you try and hard too. I 've got to give you credit for balls.

    Really your tenacity is admirable. Everything else not so much.

  13. jim robertson says:

    It' isn't what the Church can do for victims. It's what the Church didn't do for victims. Like protect us and care for us when we were injured. But now we're supposed to believe the Church has got protection for children down. When it had nothing NOTHING down for victims before. The corruption is elephantine. Not the faith but the corporate bosses who did the wrong, the criminal, immoral bosses. And Benedict heads the list. The files were on his desk for over 20 years. Where was the outreach to the injured????

  14. Delphin says:

    Wow- exclamation marks and wild-eyed strawmen all over the place. Looks like the resident lefties have called in all their looney-troop reinforcements.

    Public school homosexuals deviants are "working out" on the taxpayer dime with students, many of those victims actually are pre-pubescent, who are true captives of the socialist system. Public schools don't transfer anybody, those lefties don't consider the offending behavior a problem, well, unless it erupts in the Catholic Church. To date, there has been no nationwide media coverage (… for over a decade, rewinding old stories, yada, yada, yada, as has been the case for the Church) of the scandal that is the public school system in which the abuse is current- again, not formally managed and not decades old as is the case for the Church.

    Public schools do have a curriculum that promotes homosexuality as an acceptable  lifestyle and all those other "free-love and let it all hang out, like it does in San Fran" social disorders. Sometimes you do sow what you reap – ask Kevin Jennings, Obie's radical homosexual school czar, all about it

    The Church has set the standard for cleaning up the mess that socialists have made, namely, letting the homosexual deviants inside, just as the Boy Scouts will soon learn, a place where there are children at risk. But, especially, the young males who are emerging homosexuals that are prime targets for prey by their own. I wonder why we don't see the same issues with our nuns/sisters?

    If all Church priests and heirarchs are guilty of violently raping and covering up heinous crimes, then so are all homosexuals guilty of the same offense. If we assume the worst about my Church, we assume the worst about your homosexuals. And, don't rule out a conspiracy among radical homosexual organizations for the very purpose of bringing down the only istitution that stands between them and their total domination of the currently rather cowardly culture. While their "civil rights" scream is roundly unfounded, it may buy them the financial paydirt to which they feel entitled- kind of how they also see the Church coffers.

    My stereotyping and conspiracy-theorizing is as sound as, if not more, than yours.

    And, your contempt, hatred for all Catholics, because none of you atheist-leftists can resist taking your extraneous pot-shots is so intense you eliminate your comments from serious consideration.

    I, on the other hand, happily admit my distaste (not hatred) for deviant homosexuals wherever they do harm to others, whether in your school system, the entertainment industry, government, military, prisons, or my Church.

    You will never take down the Catholic Church, you will only make her stronger.


    • jim robertson says:

      Can you read this is an exclamation mark !.

      This is a question mark?.

      I'm really starting to believe you don't like homosexuals, Delph.

      I'm really starting to believe that.

  15. Publion says:

    I’m not sure if I am the addressee of a comment calling somebody “Honey” but some of the material in the comment seems connected to my material so here we go.


    I’m “wrong about so many things” but not a word as to what those “things” might be.


    “Epithet” is not limited to meaning “curse word”.


    My work is “the wrong work” but no explanation as to what that means. It’s a “castle on a cloud”, ditto no explanation, although I think I would have to get up mighty early in the morning to create such a masterpiece of fantastical architecture as the theory that SNAP is a tool of the Church. (Perhaps the theory was constructed primarily in compensation for the fact that SNAP didn’t recognize true genius when JR came along.)


    At the end, we’ve got nothing to work with – so much for analysis. And this on top of the fact that since these documents are not – we were suddenly told earlier on the thread – the ones JR has been talking up for so long and the ones stemming from ‘his’ case, then we can’t really be expecting him to do much analysis.  You’d think that persons who gave interviews to the media would have a bit to say, but apparently not.


    And if it isn’t about “what the Church can do for victims” but rather instead about “what the Church didn’t do for victims” then there is very little basis for any constructive input from him at all. And if you think about, no requirement for it either, according to how this little game of his has been structured.


    But look at the métier JR has carved out for himself: on the basis of how he has stitched things together to create his version of reality, he need only spend the remaining calendar flips until the Last Trumpet complaining about something that (with a greater or lesser degree of dubiousness) took place in the past and is now conveniently locked there. No further thought need be applied, since the situation giving rise to his sempiternal plaint is firmly embedded in the concrete of the past as it has been cast in his mind.


    Well, now we know.

    • jim robertson says:

      You know nothing.You obfuscate,per usual. Your posts are in the concrete of the past now and they were placed on this thread but a few days ago. So what? Christ's sacrifices; birth and death are all over 2000 years old . Yet mass is celebrated daily; hourly, to "Do this in rememberence of me". Time can be as fluid or as "concrete" as anyone can imagine it to be.

      Mahoney's lies are ever present for the children harmed by the perps he moved to new congregations.

      Given your response took up about 36 inches of space on this site. It would seem you have to "talk' a lot to cover up very simple felony crimes. Crimes commited internationally by your own corporate officers.

      No one buys your theses! You don't appear to be a very moral man, Honey.

  16. Publion says:

    I have just come across the ‘Jay McNally’ comment of the 29th at 618 AM. I don’t think JM would have had a chance to read my comments (which went up at the same time as his own) and I also don’t know if his thoughts as expressed in the comment have changed after reading my material. So with all respect to the many possibilities here in that regard, I’ll just say something in response to the ideas that he expressed in the 0618 AM comment of yesterday.


    We know – more or less – the amounts paid by the AOLA in civil settlements. But the amounts spent in legal fees is not so clearly known nor so easily categorized. There was probably a multi-million dollar legal bill simply for all the attorney-work required to complete the 500-plus Plaintiff settlement in 2006. But you can’t call defending yourself, especially in a civil lawsuit, ‘obstructing justice’. Not – at least – if we are defining ‘justice’ here as being embodied in the legal process; if on the other hand one is defining ‘justice’ according to one’s own illuminations as to what should or should not be the outcome of events, then that’s something else altogether and it’s not easily characterizable as ‘justice’ in the same sense that term is defined in the legal-process which – by the way – JM is accusing Mahony of “obstructing”.


    I also note that JM conflates two different issues here. There is a) the matter of the AOLA dealing with legal process of the formal public justice system and then there is b) the matter of the AOLA publicizing all the information (such as it is) about various allegations and misdeeds.


    And in that regard I would say this:


    In (a) the AOLA hasn’t actually faced many criminal trials (because the authorities have not brought many cases to trial). Certainly, the documents here and the information contained in this TMR article and its hyperlinks indicate that the accused gentlemen were brought to trial after their connection with the Church had ceased and it is not even clear from what we have here that the Charges in those trials actually had to do with crimes against persons committed during their priestly ministry or afterwards. As the documents we have here demonstrate, no police investigations or prosecutions were initiated during the time covered by the various documents and there were no investigations or trials for the AOLA to ‘obstruct’.


    There were legal efforts – apparently lasting some years – by an unofficial consortium of priests and former priests (I’m not sure if the AOLA was a formal Party to these efforts) to have names of suspected offenders redacted from the documents that have recently been released; those efforts ultimately failed and the documents we have do contain the names of priests and AOLA clerical staffers involved.


    The individuals certainly had their rights under the law to try to prevent the publication of their names in connection with the publication of material from their personnel files and – more cogently – their personal psychiatric and therapy records and assessments. Their efforts did not constitute ‘obstruction of justice’ and they will not because they cannot be prosecuted for exercising their legal rights to try to protect themselves as they saw necessary. Whether one agrees or disagrees with them that their legal rights in these matters are or are not overridden by ‘the public’s’ right to know names is an open question and people can take whatever position on that matter that they see fit.


    To the extent that the AOLA – either formally or informally – supported the redaction-efforts it can legitimately be conceived that the AOLA did not want to create a precedent where internal personnel files can be made public simply on the basis of some form of groundswell for publication rather than on the basis of a formal subpoena demand by proper investigating or prosecuting authorities (which has never – to my knowledge – been the basis on which the AOLA has refused information). But then too, it has to be noted that i) there has yet to be revealed in these documents any instance where the AOLA refused to comply with investigation or prosecution official demands for information and ii) the documents here do not reveal any on-going investigations or prosecutions which the AOLA could have sought to ‘obstruct’ in the first place.


    (There is, however, a question as to whether the publication of these documents is actually designed not to serve the purposes of public law enforcement but rather – under the cover of that concern – to simply lever open more possible grist for the tort-attorney mill, bringing further cases (for a desired settlement, perhaps, rather than a trial. But even if that is true, on the basis of the age of these documents – going back to the first  Reagan administration – there is little to be gained in that regard.)


    In (b) the AOLA did not voluntarily dump all of its personnel files into the public domain – but what organization would? In the first place, the AOLA could have rendered itself liable to lawsuit by persons named in the files, whose confidential files were voluntarily released into the public domain.


    And there were few (if any at all) legal investigations underway and those investigations would be empowered with the subpoena-authority and thus gain access to the files anyway. And there has been more than enough opportunity for persons considering themselves victimized to make their reports to authorities, on the basis of which investigations could be opened and perhaps formal Charges and trials brought. So I am not sure what the AOLA ‘obstructed’ here.


    And from what we have seen of these documents there is no information that would not have been available to prosecutors and investigators through their subpoena authority in the first place. (And yet, the record shows that few Charges and trials were brought in connection with the matters raised in these documents.)


    So once again we come to the odd thought: then why the brouhaha over these documents?


    And so I think it is clear that the ideas expressed in the JM comment don’t really lead anywhere.


    As regards JM’s closing question – can DP/TMR name one bishop who “should have been removed from his post for his behavior regarding pedophile priests” – I would say this.


    The documents indicate what might today be considered to be an insufficiently robust and focused investigatory effort and assessment on the part of the AOLA in some instances. But at no time were the matters blithely ignored or left alone and not-addressed: all of the priests were removed from ministry and eventually the priesthood (I am presuming here that Fr. Wempe is not still in ministry) and efforts were carried out to require the best available therapy of the time to see if they could be rehabilitated.


    So does JM’s question cover bishops going back to that prior era of the 1980s? If so, then we would have to determine if the bishop did nothing at all, or did the best he could under the clinical science of the time. And – as we see with these documents – did any bishop actually ‘obstruct’ (in the legal sense, according to the elements of the crime as defined in the applicable laws) an active police investigation? Such is not the case in any document we’ve seen here.


    Were many – perhaps most – bishops back then insufficiently robust according to the standards as they have evolved since then? Perhaps so, but then what human is ever free of that dynamic? Were many judges and police officers and prosecutors insufficiently robust in their handling of drunk-driving cases in the 1950s compared to how things evolved after MADD’s efforts in the 1980s? Yes indeed. But can you then go back with the sensibility of – say – 1988 and say that all those legal personnel ‘obstructed justice’ in the cases of the 1950s?


    Let me ask: can JM name such a bishop, let alone a very large number of bishops, who would qualify under the parameters of his question today?

    • Jay McNally says:


      These bullet points will have to suffice for my answers to your long note.

      1) From the start of this mess (for me, going bck to the late '70s) the problem has been the problem of bishops — and their staffers and subordinates — who did things and denied doing them, or told nobody about serious matters when they should have. I've never thought the problem was priests who have gone off the rails. Every profession in every city sees horrific crimes committed that defy all rational sense, so crime is nothing new, which is why we have courts and prosecutors. The problem in the Church is that too many of the people we trusted were dishonest in dealing with the crimes committed by the priests. I don't mind, and am not offended to hear a bishop may have not known the liklihood of a priest not being rehabilitated. But I am offended when the bishop said the priest never did any wrong, or tells the other untruths that typically are associated with these problems. Cardinal Law, for Pete's sake, wrote a letter to the Diocese of San Bernardino saying he knew of no problems with either Shanley or Goeghegan, which was a complete lie.

      2) Ryan McDonald in this thread is correct when he says what is needed is the "integrity and courage necessary to call the Catholic scandal what it really is and has been all along: a homosexual scandal in the priesthood."  I have been writing about this issue for well a very long time.

      3) There is lots of evidence that Mahony did all sorts of things to keep abusive priests out of the reach of the law. Additionally, there are related issues that one might expect in this kind of mess, and anyone can follow links from a Google search for "Mahony Zieman" to see Mahony was up to no-good long before the police caught up to some of the priests. There's an identifiable pattern in LA and in some other dioceses.

      Regarding the lawyers, a point of clarification. Of course the priests are entitled to a defense.  In my comment I was referring to the army of attorneys that Mahony hired to keep documents away from the media, and should have said so. I spent a long time in the media and naturally want to all the documentation I can see. I ithink Mahony and his people were less interested in defending innocent priests than he has been in keep out of prison.

      That's enough for now.

  17. Julie says:

    As usual, Publion, you are right on target, and as usual, JR apparently does not read your posts.

  18. Publion says:

    JR’s comment of 1126 AM today was not up when I put up my thoughts about JM’s comment. But here it is now.


    If JR would care to give examples of how I “know nothing” perhaps that would a) enable me to address some specifics and b) demonstrate that commenting online is more than simply name-calling and so forth.


    Time may be “fluid” but human beings have to live in the times they are actually in.


    If JR can point out any of “Mahony’s lies” that were demonstrable in the documents I spent so much time (and apparently 36 inches of space) examining, then he is free to point them out, explain how and why he assesses them as lies, and we can go on from there.


    In order to be credible JR is going to have to show clearly where I have a) ‘lied’ in order to b) ‘cover-up’ the crimes. As I have explained my thoughts, there was no ‘cover-up’ and if ‘cover-up’ is the basis of his assertions then he’s going to have to demonstrate it – because not even the authorities in LA have deemed it charge-worthy. And again, if JR cares to actually demonstrate any “lies” I have told then I will address that matter forthwith.


    Ditto the “crimes committed internationally” – if he’d care to explain or give an example then these exchanges here would be able to rise above the level of name-calling and rant. If he is perhaps referring to the long-unheard-from war-crimes, torture, and human-rights violations lawsuit brought by SNAP against the Vatican at the International Criminal Court in the Hague 2 years back, then I’ve addressed that matter already (if he recalls my comments about it on this site).


    I would need some proof that “no one buys” my theses; I have no doubt that among certain elements and mindsets they are uncongenial at best, but then again … that’s to be expected, as I have often and in many ways said on this site.


    As regards to being “moral”, let me just say that truth and honesty are rather deeply involved in morality. And accuracy is rather deeply involved in truth and honesty. And in that regard, then, I’ll leave it to JR and any of the readership so inclined to consider the very real moral aspects of internet commentary and – for that matter – in deliberately persisting in trying to work propaganda-like gambits (see my comments and links in the matter of Propaganda recently put up on this site) upon other human beings with whom, no matter in how ‘virtual’ the internet mode may be, one has entered into a very real moral relationship.


    Short form of that: there is a moral element to internet commenting and assorted variations of inaccuracy or untruth or non-truth or any other such distortions of demonstrable truth do indeed have moral implications.


    And, finally, am I correct in my previously-stated surmise that since the LA Times documents we are examining here are not the LA Times documents to which JR previously alluded in prior comments, then we may expect no extended discussion by JR on these matters? Because it would appear from his most recent comment that he indeed considers himself in possession of sufficient analysis or information so as to characterize my own assessment of the document as “lies” and “cover-up” (used here by JR in the formal legal sense or as just some sort of ‘exaggeration’ and ‘metaphor’?) … so if he would even care to share the bases upon which he decided that such characterizations are valid, even that amount of sharing of thoughts might serve to advance the discussion.

  19. To get a word in edgewise, I once again commend Dave Pierre who single-handedly is redirecting the homosexual scandal in the Catholic Church toward its true source of scandal: the vast exchanges of money and the blatant double standard of people whose agendas have nothing whatsoever to do with protecting children and other vulnerable young people. As I read through these stories of cases in the L.A. school system, the New York school system, and other jurisdictions I am struck by the vast differences not only in the institutional cover-ups and denials of school personnel, and not only in the courts' and news media's duplicity in covering these stories, but in the nature of the stories themselves. It seems that the vast number of victims in these public school cases are real children making these cases demonstrably situations of pedophilia in its clinical understanding. Whereas the majority of the claims brought against Catholic priests have been brought by older adolescents.  Of course I can only imagine what would happen if the Church and the lawyers and the news media and Jay McNally all suddenly found the integrity and courage necessary to call the Catholic scandal what it really is and has been all along: a homosexual scandal in the priesthood.  There is no real comparison with what is going on in L.A. except for the double standard the media insists on applying.  Hooray for Dave Pierre who has demonstrated, repeatedly, the integrity and courage I refer to.

  20. Jay McNally says:

    Ryan McDonald,

    I hope to find time for a longer response, but this short one will have to suffice for now. I have been writing about the "homosexual scandal" privately and publicly for 33 years now, and would like to know who else has been at it that long.  You might do a Google search for my name along with the words "Detroit Dignity" and "shirilla McGrath" and "Sebastian's angels" if you want to get up to speed with my display of "courage."

    I am still waiting to see if David can name even one bishop who has been deserving of removal from office. 

    More later. 

  21. Kopride says:

    Cough . . . Cough

  22. Mark says:

    Hey Dave, just a thought. Maybe if you have a Facebook account, maybe you should respond to people like Ann Capotosto and Debra Michels on that LA Times article.

  23. Delphin says:

    Believing in anything that doesn't involve a contrived conspiracy theory is a start in the right direction for you, Jimbo.

    My post was in response to the dbradio dbdiatribe (there seems to be a slight a time/place sequencing issue re: posts)

  24. jim robertson says:

    Mr Mac Donald, If a woman is raped by a man. Is the greater issue it was rape or that it could be viewed as a heterosexual act? Both my perps were straight. They grabed the easiest closest kid and started humping. Any illusion of romance being involved in any of this is pure outsider fantasy and complete nonsense. Does heterosexual male narcissism ever relinquish it's grasp on the rest of us? You arn't the subject. Your beauty is not the subject. It's the exact opposite that occurs when your being violated. You want to get out of your body and you do and you may never comeback into your body. It's called disassociation.

  25. Mark says:

    I concur with Ryan above that Dave Pierre performs a valuable service by keeping us focused on the true source of scandal in all this. And I want to thank Publion for his excellent analysis of this "document dump." I have to assume there is either more to come, or, as Publion suggests, this whole exercise is designed to provoke something more, because, frankly, for now, it seems much ado about nothing.

  26. jim robertson says:

    Here's a link to more documents to be released in L.A.,0,2309821.story

  27. Publion says:

    Taking a moment here to discuss the outcome of the second Philly trial.


    Although there were two Parties-Accused – a priest (Englehardt) and a lay teacher (Shero) –the focus of interest was largely on the fact that against the priest there was no evidence whatsoever except the ‘story’ told (in many variations to different persons with even more doubt-inducing ‘explanations’ as to the variations) by the prosecution’s chief witness (Billy). Although there was a variety of other Charges, mostly in planetary orbit around the ‘sun’ of Billy’s many-versioned story, the  major focus of concern was on the credibility or non-credibility of Billy’s many-versioned story, the core of which comprised the Charge against Englehardt of raping a child (phrased in PA law as “involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child”).


    The jury – after several days’ deliberation – has returned verdicts of Guilty on all Charges against both Defendants, except for the ‘rape’ Charge against Englehardt, for which it returned no-finding.


    Thus the many-versioned story of Englehardt’s raping of Billy did not ‘win over’ the jury. The most significant Charge was not sustained by the jury.


    However, assuming (and I do) that Mr. Cipriano reported accurately on all of the relevant bits that came out in testimony during the trial, then it still indicates that the public (from whom juries are drawn) is still drawn to even the most outré claims of rape, and perhaps especially of priests-raping persons. The single Charge against Englehardt was not assessed with a not-guilty verdict but rather merely a no-finding verdict.


    One other element of the trial was rather interesting: when Billy first called the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s hot-line, he was connected with a (female) older and experienced social worker whose job was victim-assistance.


    Given the frankly stupendous claim that Billy ‘reported’, the social-worker very quickly proceeded out to Billy’s house. This could hardly be considered bad-form: Billy had voluntarily called the hot-line, he reported a truly egregious and shocking story, and the social-worker’s concerns as victim-assistant would have (very properly) been for the reporting-victim (Billy) and also any possible other victims or potential other victims (the accused priest (Englehardt) was still in active ministry). She went to the Billy’s home address, received no answer to her knocking and ringing, got in her car and began to drive away. At which point she received a cell-call from Billy, who claimed he was at home but would rather meet with her off-site. The meeting was effected, the (eye-popping) story was related to the social-worker, and she proceeded according to policy (and – I believe – applicable law) on that basis.


    But then Billy subsequently changed his story during further investigation.


    In the trial, the prosecution worked on the theory that the social-worker so quickly responded to Billy’s address in order to – as it were – catch him when he was off-guard and confused and in a state of high-emotional agitation (from having voluntarily made the hot-line call?) and thus got for herself an unreliable version of the story … all in the service of her ‘real’ job which was (according to this theorization of the matter) to undermine victims from the get-go so that they would look bad from the get-go. (Billy later, if I recall Mr. Cipriano’s reporting correctly, claimed he was on-drugs when he made the call, and was in no fit condition to be talking to a social-worker.)


    You see how things operate once you are Through The Looking-Glass.


    I would say that if one reviews the AOLA documents and this second Philly trial (through Mr. Cipriano’s acute reporting), and then reviews the Propaganda material I had provided in previous comments on this site, one can readily see how those Propaganda strategies have largely succeeded in the past 30 years and are still robustly operating even now, and not only among the lower orders of the webverse.


    As President Eisenhower said in final Address to the nation, “so much remains to be done”.

  28. Delphin says:

    "It's called Disassociation", from reality. Homosexuals (regardless of victimization history)disassociate more than the general population due to measurable biological differences in the brain, due to the cultural prejudices with which those individuals are confronted and due to tremendous psychological conflict. And, that's only for starters. The practice of their unnatural lifestyles worsen their afflictions biologically, psychologically and most of all, spiritually.

    And, this fact could be the foundation for, certainly, some of the false accusations against priests. This is only one underlying cause as a driver - in addition to the well-documented historic and current hatred for the Catholic Church (for example, where homosexuality aligns with political radicalization) and the incredibly strong financial incentives (suing beats working and bolsters measly retirement plans, right?). What a volatile recipe, and weapon, with which to poison your arch enemy.

    When a woman reports violent rape, sometimes it is for reasons other than that she was actually violated against her will (no revelation here). And, even if the vile act is verified, physical evidence is required (rape kits, anyone?) and there is a statute of limitations, time limits for which which vary nationwide and internationally (females note: don't get raped in any Muslim countries unless you have several witnesses). I wonder why such lines of evidence and prosecutorial standing vary so wildly; depending upon your gender, or cross-gender identity?

     Heterosexual males commit violent rape for many reasons, a few of which include mysogyny, external/environmental stimuli (culturally-induced conflation of violence and sex), pedophilia (opposite sex) and dominance issues. Homosexual males commit violent rape, usually against susceptible males (weaker subjects, incl. children), as an acceptable element of the deviant homosexual culture (ex. S&M, NAMBLA). But, homosexual males seldom (statistically undetectable) commit violent rape against females, just as heterosexual males seldom (statistically undetectable) commit violent rape against males. Statutory rape is a whole other matter, and it is this waffling legal transgression that is the foundation for the majority of the sexual abuse claims against predominantly homosexual priests. What is permissable in Africa, Asia and Centrl-South America is not so in Europe or North America, generally. What is permissable in the US deep south is not so in the northeast or California (although, I can't think of too many things that are not permissable in California when it comes to the leftist/atheist, radical agenda). And, the Church's opposition know this all too well when it comes to using these regional, worldwide, legal and sexual differences against the Church, but they are too willing to exploit and distort them (lie) to suit the anarchists cause "du jour". But, the Church and her defenders know it, too.

    The majority of the comparitively small Church abuse cases (as compared to the genral population) involve statutory rape (between/among willing individuals, not by force or violence), not violence againt children or pedophilia, as has been erroneously and widely misreported (and politically pounded) committed by homosexuals. And, age of consent, and legal reporting laws, vary statewide, and worldwide. hence, the perfect storm scenario for the Church (how many times will you have to hear/read this, really?).

    Heterosexual male predators will preferentially and predominantly violate women (this is well-documented). They will only cross the gender barrier if their preferred prey is absolutely or permanently unavailable (ex. prison). They will not commit their offense, against their innate nature, for convenience (as has been posited).  Bi-sexuals are generally (there are some exceptions) homosexuals in denial, and as such, become your statistical outliers.

    Unfortunately, when the American Psychiatric Association was hacked by political leftists, sound science on homosexuality went out the window and flew over the Rainbow (how else do you get to Oz?). It was only then that homosexuality was delisted as a psychosexual disorder (previously listed along with bestiality, incest, pedophilia, necrophilia, rape, etc.). Just because a segment of society has always been homosexual does not make it any more within the norm than those other psychosexual disorders, or any other disorders that afflict humanity. None of us is perfect. And, only the scourge of relativism and dishonest data manipulation can (attempt to) skew natural, and Gods law. Wrong doesn't become right just because more people appear to be participating in it (or, in this case, revealing and exploiting it- the homosexual subpopulation has remained stable throughout the ages). Relativism is creeping into the human experience in the West (they have different issues elsewhere) and distorting the truth.  There is a standard, God gave it to us, and nature confirms it for us everyday.

    The only time you may see homosexual behavior occur in animal species (wildlife), which is always temporally stunted, is during opposite sex "droughts". The same-sex behavioral simulation has a evolutionary advantage in that it reinforces the necessity and function of ritualistic mating behavior (until the real thing happens along). No two same-sex animals of any wild species have ever been documented as "pair-bonding" (a definitive scientific concept, not similar to humans hooking up or playing house ala Central Park Zoo penguins) for the purpose of engaging in sexual activity- it always occurs to undertake the ritualistic mating behavior inherrent in all animal species, including humans. In fact, no peer-reviewed research/literature [beware of junk science fueled by politics] has, to date, revealed any animal species that engage in homosexual consumate mating (it is not considered intercourse between same-sex individuals), but, only mating simulation (which is highly ritualistic).

    Zoo animals suffer from myriad abherrent biological and psychological behaviors resulting from the effects of their capture and/or rearing and prolonged captivity in unnatural environments, therefore, they are not used as reliable behavior models. Farm animals are human contrivinces/creations (not Gods) and should not be used for behavior models, either.

    Dissenters of the Catholic Church (enemies from within and without) may get away with their vast distortions of Church dogma, doctrine, heirarchs, religious/priests and laity, and any history associated with the Church (for which >95% for > 2 millenia, and counting, was and is irrefutably a glorious benefit to mankind) with the help of the dishonest media, but you may have a little bit harder time using and distorting your version of science (as in the tiresome reason vs. myth atheist acrobatics) for your unholy crusade. And, much science lately, sadly, is every bit as tainted by politically-driven financial gains (ex. federal grants) and agenda (political-cultural biases in academia, government) as are any other disciplines (ex. global warming political science), so the cherry-picking will occur here, as well. As always, follow the money and you will find the bias.

    In reality [again, within the context of the strong disassociation factor], neither history (sans politically-driven revisions] or sound [rigorously tested to remove biases] science support your side of the argument.

  29. Delphin says:

    Damn, I've got this whole thing all wrong; I apparently quite erroneously thought that it was the judicial system (incl. law enforcement) that was supposed to identify, sequester and prosecute the bad guys – with the media, you know, that thin line that assists in ensuring our freedoms, aptly applied between government and its citizens, simply reporting on those activities so as to honestly, accurately, promptly and without bias, inform the public.

    I didn't think it was a media watchdogs job to do it all.

    Well, if we had known the media watchdogs were going to be held reponsible to undertake law enforcement and the legal systems obligations to "make our bones", we probably would not had permitted the current dishonest system, including the misfitmedia, to muck it all up so badly for so long. Now, that you've made such a mess of the whole maghilla, you want someone else to step in, sort through it and separate the goats from the sheep?  Thanks to your gangs precedential and stupendous failures, the victims of your witchhunt are all covered in the same crap you've been throwing around for decades. How the hell would anyone know, given the incredible misconduct of the entire polticized system who is actually guilty – your chronies have made such a filthy mess that you would have to scrub every case. You did more to harm and revictimize the true victims than anybody else.

    But, at least, you did punish the Church for the very sin of being Catholic while simultaneously financially and politically benefitting your lefty buddies. Win-win for you. Lose-lose for all victims.

    Here's an idea: since there is more then ample hard evidence of legal and media misconduct (and actual crimes) as pertains to the prosecution of way too many Catholic priests, let's toss the convictions on every one of them for the tainted, politically driven piles of manure that they are, and let's also overturn some of the new legislation "specially made" just for Catholics, and then we may consider your not-so-well-hidden request to straighten out the mess your peeps have made. Perhaps, we need an appoinment of a bipartisan Special Investigative Commission to examine the whole disgusting First Amendment and Civil Rights affair as pertains to Catholics, specifically?

    ….Gots us some "tainted fruits" [pardon the pun] all over the place here, now, don't we?

  30. Publion says:

    I followed the link to the LA Times article JR relevantly provided. It discusses another very recent short flare-up of the issue as to whether or not the remaining 30,000 documents should be released with or without the names of the AOLA personnel redacted. My own thought is that if what we have seen of the documents so far is any reliable indication, there is no reason why the names should be redacted in the first place. But again, I have no idea what the nature and stipulations of the agreement were half a decade ago that led to the publicization of these documents and perhaps in that agreement (whatever it was) there are further complicating considerations about which we do not know.


    Possibly there are more incendiary documents yet to be released. Or possibly the purpose of publishing the un-redacted files is to either whip up further public feeling (by ‘putting a name and a face’ to the AOLA personnel) or to simply toss out names that might help this or that person so-inclined to ‘remember’ things.


    Impossible to say at this point, but that’s the adventure of it all in historical inquiry.


    I could also recommend a look at the online comments to the article just to get a sense of how things are viewed by various types and folks.


    I also point out that if – if – the documents we have seen so far were some of the most ‘incriminating’ documents in the cache, then this whole affair is going to be an exercise in reduced-expectations for a whole lot of people, for whatever various reasons. But then – if there any people who for whatever reasons are just interested in getting the documents/names made public – then the whole exercise will have been worth it.


    Meanwhile, now we know why candidates for history Ph.D.’s take so long to finish the thesis

  31. Fitasafiddle says:

    Publion appears to be stuck on the word "rape". He does not want child molesting priests to be called rapists unless by his definition. While it is true that all child molesters do not rape children, it is also true that most do. That means that while Father Pervert might not anally sodomize all his victims, he might orally sodomize them instead.  Monsignor Lynn and his ilk knew all this, dear Publion, and still did nothing to stop this evil.  A grown man with a roman collar who claims to be only "cuddling" or "sexually touching" a boy in bed needs a lot more than therapy or "being read the riot act." He needs a jail cell among the folks who can teach them a thing or two about the cost of desecrating children.


  32. Publion says:

    This is rich. I have been focusing carefully on how few priests have been charged with rape precisely because of the tendency – most notably by FAAF – to start playing the child-raping priests tune; consistent readers may recall FAAF’s frequent deployment of this trope along with that queasy phrase “the wee ones”.


    I would need to see some substantial evidence to accept that while “all child molesters do not rape children, it is also true that most do”. And is FAAF using “child molester” here as an equivalent of a clinically-defined “pedophile” or is she using it rather as loosely and more expansively as she does “pedophile” itself in so many comments?


    And then , this commenter who usually concludes with an incantation of thickly-larded, smarmy and queasily pious faux-Catholic ‘prayer’ that would beggar a pope, treats us to a tour of the distinctions between oral and anal sodomy.


    And then claims to know that “Monsignor Lynn and all his ilk knew all this” … which means that either FAAF enjoys a personal relationship with these gentlemen (and may be a candidate for JR’s Tool of the Church award) or else that FAAF is – once again – mistaking her personal certainties for verifiable and certifiable realities.


    But of course, there’s a method in the madness here. Unless you focus on rape and – FAAF has now added – the intricacies of sodomy, and then presume gratuitously (unless FAAF has personal knowledge of Msgr. Lynn’s or any episcopal staffer’s fund of sex knowledge) that the episcopal staffers “knew all this”, then you won’t have any bad-guys for your Cartoon … and then where would Saturday morning be?


    And then, this putatively pious and prayerful person reveals her true colors: she’d like to see any imprisoned priest brutalized or worse. But it would be OK but it would be in the cause of being punished for “desecration of others”. A desecration for a desecration, apparently. Praise and eternal glory be to Blah-Blah and all the marvelous sempiternal sub, lesser, and associate Blah-Blahs for His, Her, Their and Its abidingly glorious attention to vividly-envisioned and precisely-imagined detail – Amen, Amen and So Mote It Be for  the wee ones!


    I’ll tell you all this: I think in composing this comment and working it up, FAAF spent a little too much time imaginatively lingering over mental representations of the differences in the assorted  sexual dynamics she discusses. And ditto about the images of an imprisoned priest being brutalized in prison.


    And I say this not to get into FAAF’s personal kinks, but because I think what we can see here is a very violent predisposition that happens to have latched onto a topic where – with the appropriate ‘prayer and piety’ costume – that very violent internal predisposition can run free. I get the clear and palpable impression that lurking behind these oddly-off-pitch comments, pious FAAF is not simply a little queasily over-pious and smarmy; that the true internally-predisposed FAAF is no more a pious little old Catholic lady than Norman Bates was a little old lady living in the old Victorian house at the top of the hill in “Psycho”.  This is a persona adopted to make the internal violent predisposition more palatable, ‘baptizing’ it so to speak.


    People like this are going to be encountered in the webverse, especially in subjects of a sexual nature. The frightening thing is that if one actually went to ‘meetings’, one might run into them for real.

  33. Publion says:

    In my immediately previous comment, in the paragraph beginning "And then", the sentence should read "But it would be OK because it would be …".

  34. Jay McNally says:

    Ha!!  Looks like Arcbishop Gomez has a very different view of reality than David. 

    While David can't name one bishop — not one — who should be stripped of his office, Gomez named two today: Mahony and an auxiliary.

    I hope this is the start of a trend.


  35. Delphin says:

    Yes, let's all celebrate (whoopy), another priest or two may have been thrown under the lefty political bus. At least THIS Archbishop meets your skewed standards, after all, he did just apparently sacrifice some of his own, likely for political reasons.

    So, the only good priest is either one in prison, dead, or a Judas-priest? I must suppose that there is no such thing as a good priest whom is none of the above by your standards?

    Regardless, it still does not change the fact that the prosecution of the Church's deviant homosexual problem (ie. viral outbreak) was and is carried out by antiCatholic haters as a full-blown persecution.

    No one ever doubted there were priests who were guilty. As deviant homosexuals "act out" everywhere, we know it to be true that the Church certainly also had her guilty. The problem was, and is, the incredible corruption embraced by the left, and that which infiltrated the legal system and the media, leading to the persecution and prosecution of innocents, and a major religion.

    Ha! back to your disgusting celebration, now.

  36. Publion says:

    In regard to LA Archbishop Gomez’s actions in regard to Mahony and Curry:


    I can see three possibilities here: 1) that Gomez is making a symbolic gesture, since Mahony is already retired and Curry must be pretty close to retirement age himself; or 2) Gomez is making a pre-emptive gesture on the basis of what he knows is in the larger, yet-to-be-released cache; or 3) Gomez is just yielding to the throw-under-the-bus impulse that has marked episcopal responses to pressure from the beginning.


    In (1) Gomez – perhaps even with the assent of Mahony and Curry – is removing them to placate public opinion. In this scenario the material in the documents the LA Times has released so far is the worst of the material. Mahony is already retired so this is mostly symbolic, and Curry must be close to that age.


    In (2) Gomez is aware that the there is far more damaging material in the documents yet-to-be-released, and knows that heads will have to roll and he’s getting ahead of the curve.


    In (3) the material so far released is pretty much as bad as it gets, and Gomez is just rattled by the adverse publicity and the prospect of more of the same, and needs to relieve his own stress.


    What has come to mind is the question as to whether the LA Times has all the documents already. While it seems to have some documents, the article seems to imply that the release has yet to be made. And yet there are these documents that have already been published by the LAT … so I’m not sure what’s going on with that.


    The adventure continues.

  37. Publion says:

    Responding here in a short sequence of comments, to JM’s thoughts (date/time stamped Jan. 31, 3:58 PM) in regard to the material I put up in prior comments.


    I have been working off the documents here and while on the one hand that means I don’t bring to these documents a long ‘history’ of experience with the AOLA matter as it has or may have existed for 30 or even 40 years, yet on the other hand I can examine the documents for themselves without letting anything else influence that examination.


    And from the documents here, I can’t find any indication that any AOLA personnel in the cases under consideration in the documents said that “the priest never did anything wrong, or tells the other untruths that are typically associated with these problems”. In fact, I think that the passage from JM’s comment I have just quoted indicates clearly that he is reacting against some material or thoughts that are not in the documents. That’s as may be: perhaps he is remembering (with greater or lesser accuracy) a statement of some AOLA staffer at some point in time in the past 40 years. But again, that goes back quite a way, and certainly before the Dallas reforms were put in place. I would be very concerned if today I encountered any current episcopal staffer or Ordinary anywhere characterizing a demonstrably genuine instance of actual abuse as the priest “never did anything wrong”.


    Which again brings us back to what I think has been and is a guiding dynamic of this whole document publication event: it is trawling back seeking not to find actionable law enforcement material (which law enforcement could have found out on its own authority anyway) but rather the event serves as a psychological or emotional rallying-point; the publicity acts as a magnet to attract all the loose iron filings lying around on the great sheet of paper that is LA.


    Thus as JM indicates, he has for decades been upset with what he characterizes – and (I don’t have knowledge of those days decades ago in LA) what perhaps were – instances where bishops did not publically discuss the matter candidly (which is not at all the same thing as saying they obstructed or conspired to obstruct justice). But then if all this comes down to is the mode of how bishops were or were not sufficiently candid in how they discussed matters – then it seems that that concern can be addressed by the happy report that since the introduction of the reforms  this is no longer the case. (Although I would also distinguish between i) a bishop not candidly discussing a demonstrably genuine case, ii) a bishop avoiding public comment that might somehow create its own legal violations of any party’s or parties’ formal rights, and iii) a bishop not willing to behave like ‘old teachers’ dragged out into the street in dunce caps by shrieking Red Guard cades during Mao’s Cultural Revolution and expected to loudly and convincingly recite selected passages from that Little Red Book.


    And it is my impression that a significant proportion of people – certainly in the webverse – are looking precisely for that number-iii option and aren’t going to be really happy until they get to watch it.


    I myself am very very pleased that Dallas came along and has created a reformation in how a whole lot of things are handled. And  – granted the complexities I outlined in the paragraph immediately above – I can appreciate the pent-up frustrations of various persons for reasons similar to JM’s. But if that’s basically what this LA exercise is about, then OK – but I would want that to be acknowledged generally: the LA exercise is about venting pent-up feelings from events (or conceptions of events) long ago.

    • Publion says:

      As regards a “homosexual scandal in the priesthood”, I am not so sure – but I don’t mean that as just an indirect way of saying No. Certainly, the dual whammies of a) the hyper-excited conclusions some drew as to what Vatican 2 intended or didn’t intend, which started up even while the Council was still in session, and b) the effects of the ‘Stonewall revolution’ starting just 4 years later in 1969 –created forces and situations where sexual activity of either orientation could begin to manifest.
      The Roman and the Vatican approach to law is and always has been ‘Mediterranean’, as opposed to the Anglo-Saxon approach (embodied in American law as derived from our English-law roots). The Anglo-Saxon approach seeks the minimal: you define the elements of the law, and then you expect everybody to obey those minimum requirements of the law; the purpose is to get people to obey the minimum requirements of the law you have written. The Mediterranean approach is almost the opposite: you enshrine in the law the absolute ideal (‘kanon’ in Greek; ‘canon’ in English) and then prepare for predictable failures to fully conform to that ideal; the purpose of the law is to inspire people toward the highest ideal even as you realize that there is no way you can expect total and complete success by any individual.
      In some ways this is a collision of worlds: to the Anglo-Saxon approach the Mediterranean approach looks lax and cynical; to the Mediterranean approach the Anglo-Saxon approach looks impossibly demanding and unrealistic to the point of being inhuman.
      In the matter of homosexuality, it seems to me that the Church – bound by her construction of the purpose of human sexual activity – officially held to the ‘kanon’ of heterosexuality, while not making much of a fuss (such as could even have been made in the long pre-psychological era in the West) over ‘orientation’, and focusing only on the control of sexual-activity. So long as there wasn’t going to be any sexual activity, why worry about what it might be if it were? – that sort of thing. But in the 1960s in the West, that general strategy failed under the synergy of so many cultural pressures.
      Individual priests failing to master their sexual urges had been a matter of concern for the Church all along, whether the instances were of a heterosexual or homosexual nature. But then in the 1960s the assertion was made and widely accepted in the West, especially in the US, that sexual-activity was not only good but necessary, and then that homosexual sexual-activity was equally and perhaps even more ‘good and necessary’.
      If that’s what is meant by “the homosexual crisis in the priesthood” then I think I can go with that.
      What I can’t go-with (and I am not saying that JM demonstrates this) is a more simplistic conception (Cartoon, frankly) that the Church is and always has been nothing more than a millennia-long gay sex ring in which the bosses merrily supported a ‘culture of rape’ in which battalions of sex-obsessed priests (straight or gay) cheerily traded sex-partners among themselves like baseball cards. But as Hitler clearly and acutely realized, if you can suppress mature discourse then the Cartoon will always win out over the Thought, and  the Cartoon’s embrace by ‘the masses’ will even force the institutions of society to bend to its power.


    • Publion says:

      I don’t see anything in the LA documents that we have so far, as I said, that indicates clearly and simply that Mahony “did all sorts of things” – what sort of things would those things have been? And what does it mean to say “out of the reach of the law”, since in the 3 cases under discussion here, there was no way that any of them were ever “out of the reach of the law” (to the extent, I add, that the law sought them in the first place).
      The “armies of lawyers” that were hired – by Mahony or by that consortium of priests? – to contest the release of the documents un-redacted might have been merely the effort of a sex-ring to prevent its exposure. Or it might have been the effort to prevent the establishment of a precedent as I described in my comments.
      I’m still not sure what the purpose of redaction would serve, in terms of the episcopal staffers (clearly the accused priests would not want their psychological records published, to say the least): if the police want, they can easily obtain un-redacted copies of any document whose material attracts their attention, so publication is not in the service of law enforcement since they don’t need publication. Rome – if it wanted – could probably see the un-redacted files so there isn’t that future-career angle.
      Which leaves, it seems to me, two angles: the ‘trawl’ angle (discussed in prior comments) and the keep-the-1980s-going angle. Because whatever episcopal staffers (perhaps now Bishops themselves) did back then (and again, the documents so far don’t demonstrate much) Church policy and sensibility has changed to the point where those old approaches will not be tolerated today.

    • Jay McNally says:


      This will be my last post on this thread.

      For brevity, the "all sorts of things" I'm talking about are covered in several articles that are still up on the web. BBC, Christian Science Monitor and LA Times all carry reportage of what appear to be the most egregious examplies of Mahony and his team intentionally keeping known pedophiles away from the law. Typically they were shuffled to other regions or countries. Additionally, and most importantly, no effort was made by Mahony to simply call the cops and have the priests arrested for their crimes. 

      Others have done the research about the "all sorts of things" I am referring to.  Begin with a google search of "Mahony Zieman" and spend a few hours reading about life in LA under Mahony.

      You wrote: "to the extent, I add, that the law sought them in the first place."  Of course, that is the problem! How would the cops know to arrest a pedophile if Mahony shuffled him out of the country? See the note from one administrator (Curry, I think) who advised Mahony to keep a priest who he had molested 26 people out of town because there was a fear that somebody would recognize the priest.

      The verbiage about the Dallas Charter, public school teachers, the media, etc., do not lesson lesson the injustices committed by Mahony and his underlings or their culpability for them. 

  38. Delphin says:

    I do hope that dbradio, while pounding away on "its" keyboard as "it" was spewing "its" intentionally visual and vile filth, had both hands on the keyboard.

    What dregs of society this issue is unearthing! Publion could not be more correct about his/her analysis of the LA documents, or his/her warnings regarding the webperverse poison purveyors contributions (that was generous) to this site.

    Gotta go and shower now….

  39. jim robertson says:

    I attempted to post an exit letter here. Dave thought it too rude, I guess.

    In it I decided that the majority of posters here were too immoral to talk to anymore. Immoral. You should really be ashamed of yourselves but your not.

    The nuns who taught me well said to not associate with bad companions. You are most definetly that. How do you sleep? Done.

  40. anonymous says:


    If anyone reads the American Cancer Society site: very carefully,

    they will realize both men and woman have had spikes in the incidence of HPV, and more.

    The annoying aspect of this situation is not an adult man attracted to another adult male.

    The annoying aspect is the manipulative, hypocritial liberals who persecute the church

    (via the priests) and dramatize information and associated behaviors for shock value.

    Yet when the clock strikes on ones 18th birthday, they are too eager to push just about

    any lifestyle (as long as it is promises promiscuity)  Isn't this the same group (i.e. pep

    squad) for Planned Parenthood in high schools?

    Is the plan, so to speak, to have plenty of sex without having a baby?


  41. Delphin says:

    Just in case anyone needed a refresher…

    Immoral  adj.  Not moral; inconsistent with rectitude, purity, or good morals; contrary to conscience or the divine law; wicked; unjust; dishonest; vicious; licentious; as, an immoral man; an immoral deed.

    Synonyms: Wicked; sinful; criminal; vicious; unjust; dishonest; depraved; impure; unchaste; profligate; dissolute; abandoned; licentious; lewd; obscene


    Yep, he certainly pinned the opposition accurately.


    Presuming he found another "home", I wish him peace. No soul is lost that is still in the fight (even if on the wrong cause/side).


  42. Publion says:

    Responding to JM’s comment of Feb. 2nd at 7:34 PM.


    I spent time on the “all sorts of things” assertion precisely because I am concerned for getting some actual factual justification. There’s just too much vagueness and too much assertion-without-demonstration in all of this Matter and I had hoped that after all of his reported decades of interest and attention, JM (as someone I had hoped to be a reliable spokesman and commenter, as opposed to others we have seen on this site) might have had even a single reference handy that would –with some level of clarity for other observers – establish the point. Surely, if JM was making reference to any published reports that clearly and definitively establish what he accused Mahony and his team of doing, then that would have been hugely helpful here. Yes, I could google-search under any number of search-terms and parameters – that would yield several hundred thousand assorted bits that talk about or report on reports or are similarly distant and peripheral; from JM I thought we could get a clear, concise and definitive reference to all the various things which after all the various years and decades he had amassed in his library or files on these matters.


    Thus it is hardly useful to claim that “others have done the research” – I could have imagined that on my own. What I wanted from JM was at least one solid useful reference to back up his claims and assertions and move all of this beyond the stage it now seems to be stuck in (assertions but no demonstrable evidence) and up to the level where we have some reliable and demonstrative material that indicates that the assertions have sufficient basis in fact (rather than in the asserter’s ‘certainty’).


    The cops would have known to arrest a pedophile if any persons in a rather wide range of relationship, or the alleged victims themselves – certainly by the time they had reached the age of 21 or older – had told the police. But – by the most remarkable working out of events – nobody among this rather significant population of persons told the police. The “shuffling out of the country” would make no real difference: if the police had a case, they could easily go for the type of international warrant such as we saw in the Julian Assange case. The question is absolutely not about the (alleged and asserted) shuffling-out of the country by Mahony; the question – far more acutely – revolves around a) why nobody within such a wide range of relationship to any – any – of these alleged victims, nor the victims themselves, dialed 9-11.


    Of course it’s possible that they did call 9-11 and the police/DA did not find a credible case. But I will say here that I very much doubt that the LAPD or DA simply dropped a case, and the media ignored it, because the suspect had been “shuffled out of the country”.  For that matter, I still can’t get my mind around the overall trope that these cases would all have been tried and issued in convictions if only the Church hadn’t blocked the police/DA from doing their job. In almost all of these cases, there were any number of people – not employed by the Church – who were in a position to call the police; and as the years and decades went by and the alleged victims reached 21 years of age and subsequently passed well beyond it, then we get an ever-increasing number of ‘dogs that didn’t bark’, to use the Sherlock Holmes image. Anybody in a support group or an acquaintance who was told the story could have gone to the police and said ‘this is what I just heard’. Nobody did. There are any number of reasons why that rarely (if ever) happened, but I very seriously doubt that the Church having a) control of everybody and b) blocking the police are the answers.


    And what possible difference could it have made if “Mahony kept (an accused priest) out of town”? By then the action that formed the basis of the allegation was already accomplished and certain persons (including the victim) knew about it – ‘recognizing’ the priest afterwards doesn’t even enter into it. (Unless you want to buy into recovered-memory theory and then add that a chance passing-by on the street or whatever would trigger the ‘memory’ – but I have put on record here the problems with that theory.) It was equally possible that Mahony didn’t want suspected priests being attacked on the street (by persons who either hadn’t gone to the police, or the police/DA had not considered the case capable of being followed-up, or a person had ‘heard a story’ and just figured he’d get in a whack for the good-guys (so called).


    As far as all my material on the Dallas matter being “verbiage”, I can’t accept that claim as anything more than another un-grounded and un-demonstrated assertion. And surely the second Jay Report indicates that the Dallas reforms have had a great deal of effect since it clearly states that not only have ‘historical’ allegations fallen off noticeably, but ‘current’ allegations even more so.


    And if this is all about “injustices”, then either the police/DA have not found cases that can be pursued (and I cannot accept that there are large numbers of ‘victims’ of anything in this country today or for the past decade – at least – who are not familiar with the reality of statute-of-limitations. Perhaps the police are the ones to be prevailed upon here: to release the number of legally actionable priest-abuse cases they have been unable to pursue merely because of the expiration of the statute-of-limitations.


    And if all this is about “injustices” then we are also right back at square-one: we don’t have demonstrable and credibly evidence that there were any such “injustices” actually perpetrated.


    What is going on here?


    I will conclude by noting – and it has to be said – that once again we have here somebody who claimed to be knowledgeable, who now announces that for TMR commenting purposes he’s ‘getting out of town’ but wants to fire off one last repetition of assertions-without-demonstrations before he doesn’t want to talk about it anymore. And I will further note that this is precisely what would be called-for by the overall Propaganda strategy: keep repeating the ‘story’ (Cartoon, if you want to sharpen the point a bit) and don’t allow any discussion or analysis or thinking, and if you find yourself in a situation where ‘thinking’ can’t be avoided, distracted, shouted-down, squelched, or suppressed – then simply get out of that forum and take yourself to more congenial (i.e. non-thinking) forums. But I thank JM for at least not covering us all with the parting accusation of deliberate and intractable ‘immorality’ as was also done in a comment on this site in the past 24 or so hours.

    • Jay McNally says:


      I'm a glutton for punishment.  I came back, but briefly.

      You wrote: "We don’t have demonstrable and credibly evidence that there were any such “injustices” actually perpetrated."

      Are you saying Mahony has done nothing wrong? Curry did nothing wrong?  Your post here seems to say this.

      As for me declining to engage you in debate. If I had new info I'd put it out there. But anything I would say about LA is already out there and instantly available. No need for me to copy and paste.

      Have you read the news coverage? There's no need for me to copy and paste this stuff for this web site. It's out there.

      But, check out this site:

      And yes, the Dallas charter has nothing to do with anything that took place before 2002.

      And what's your real name? 


  43. Delphin says:

    Just another example of media bias, this time, as controlled by the current White House.

    This OpEd is written by liberal journalist Kirsten Powers. This media-manipulation trend should trouble everyone, on either side of, or, in the middle of the political aisle.

    It is applicable here at TMR due to the undeniable leftist-antiCatholic nexus.


  44. Delphin says:

    Anon, I think the lefts plan is to attack our western culture from all sides to completely break it down to absolute zero on a morality-ethical scale and to rebuild it in the leftist-atheists (Godless) image. That way, the gods of this, their world, can rule. So, they nibble away at us from all corners.

    And, I believe that only Christianity, particularly Catholicism, stands in their way. Hence, the increasingly hostile assaults on the Church.

    So short-sighted of them, if they only knew what awaited them both here (note accelerated advancement of both the Islamic and Chinese tentacles to extend their expansion), and hereafter.

    Not sustaining or increasing our birth rate internally, as a united (culturally cohesive) nation, is the most effective way to destroy its sovereignty, and its moral character since it is abortion that is the primary vehicle for achievement of that goal.

    There is nothing good [abiding by the laws of nature and God] that exists as an element of the leftists-atheist platform. It all leads to the same end result; death of our God-given freedom and soul.

    The good news is that we're prepared to fight, and win.

  45. Publion says:

    Responding here to JM’s of February 3rd at 8:14 PM.


    You’re not a glutton for punishment, I think, JM. You are given to histrionic gestures without thinking, and now – having either thought about things or having been advised to toss in a few more points – you need to find a way to get back on the stage after your Grand Exit. We’ve seen JR do it several times here.


    I would ask you to explain how you could possibly get from my focus on the documents in the LA document cache (such as we have them) to the idea that I am saying anything about Mahony other than what I have clearly said. If you paid more attention to facts as we have them in the documents and then drawing what logically can be derived from those documents, you wouldn’t be needing to create fresh phantasmagoria to occupy your attentions.


    If I can perhaps contribute to that worthy task, let me simply point out a thought that appears frequently in my comments: from what we have here in these documents. I go where the documents lead – I don’t go further, for any reason. And I say that no reason justifies going beyond the documentary record when you’re trying to establish the validity and relevance of documents. That’s the discipline of doing history in any genuine sense, and what keeps history from becoming propaganda.


    The documents we have don’t provide the evidence of the matters claimed by various persons. I also point out that in the American concept of justice (at least in its ideals) you need evidence – it’s not enough to have strong feelings or such. I suggest – if you haven’t read them already – the links in my comments to the theory of propaganda: feelings over thought and feelings over evidence or the lack of it. This is a lethal dynamic to introduce into any workable sense of justice. History has, as Churchill says, “a flickering lamp” – while it would be marvelous to have a powerful searchlight that can almost penetrate the surfaces of matter itself, it’s a fantasy to it can be had, and a delusion to think one ever has such a thing or can have such a thing. Human justice has to make its way carefully, in the dark and over rocky unknown paths. There’s nothing for it. And the alternative leads to a terrible thicket and a steep cliff indeed.


    I had left you every opening to demonstrate from what you report are decades of focused attention – and perhaps even study – more substantive material that would enable us to establish some of the assertions and claims you make. You did not provide it; and in fact the link you provided in your immediately previous post is another telling-of-opinion (so often these days passing as “news coverage”), which is as it may be, but doesn’t go anywhere near establishing what you have asserted and claimed about the AOLA. And – of course – you said you were moving-on.


    It also occurs to me that if you or anybody had substantive evidence of the claims and assertions being largely made about the crimes of shuffling and cover-up then you yourself or anybody else similarly situated could go to the police or could have gone to the police.


    Your point about the Dallas Charter is well-taken.


    As to your query as to who I ‘really’ am, I can refer you to my rather extended comments on that very topic made in response to similar gambits by JR on this site. But in the short form: I ‘am’ the ideas and analysis I put forth. That should be more than enough. Unless – thinking back to propaganda techniques – the question you (and JR, also late of this site) pose is merely an effort to distract. Ideas have a life of their own, and are actually capable (I have always found) of providing a certain amount of rather fruitful companionship. I recommend it to you as a more valuable and efficacious use of your time and energy than trying to develop a personal relationship with me.


    Shall I bid you Farewell and Godspeed or would that perhaps be premature?

  46. LisaC says:

    Jim Robertson at 5:19pm on 1/29/13 in reply to dbradio on 1/29/13 at 10:10am: “well said”
    are you kidding me?!?! You mean to say that a hysterical unthought and especially unsubstantiated and uncorraborrated rant is well said??!! Publicon goes into specific detail as to each point and express his thoughts in relation to what he is viewing and yet you respond to dbradio as being well said?! Sigh! To me it appears as though you clearly were never instructed on how to properly think for yourself. In fact Publicon very helpfully guides one towards doing just that in his comments and yet you have yet to address even one of his comments with anything more than what seems like a spoiled child sticking his fingers in his ears saying “la! la! la!” The saddest part is unfortunately you are not unique in your actions, but you are not convincing anyone else that you statements have any weight to them. Well said, sheesh!
    Publicon Thank You!

  47. Publion says:

    I am writing this comment not having noticed any comments after my immediately previous comment.


    It seems to me that this ‘documents’ brouhaha is expected to serve several purposes, and some of them are subsurface and ulterior.


    On the surface, it appears simply as an effort to discover if crimes (cover-up and shuffling for the express conspiratorial purpose of thwarting law enforcement) were committed by priests and/or AOLA staffers.  And if that is the case, then the documents we have seen so far don’t seem to offer much.


    But I think that there is more underneath that. For one thing, it seems that the document dump also feeds off of a long-standing concern on the part of some that the AOLA was – at least some decades ago – largely staffed and perhaps even run by clerics primarily ‘gay’ in orientation. This does not even rise to the question of some sort of ‘velvet mafia’ bit whereby gay staffers and hierarchs covered-up the ‘gay’ crimes of gay priests, but simply that there were (in this scenario) a large number of gay clerics in the AOLA.


    In this scenario, eagerness to have some of that purported situation ‘revealed’ in the documents – regardless of what they specifically do and do not establish as far as criminal conspiracy and cover-up goes – is the motivating dynamic. Thus, a too-careful consideration of the documents to determine what they do and do not demonstrate is counterproductive and frustrates this sub-surface objective and agenda.


    Then there is the possible scenario in which persons who are ‘certain’ that the feeling that conspiracy and cover-up absolutely and without doubt took place simply has to be the take-away for most readers of the documents  - and any examination that interferes with the generating of that ‘feeling’ would frustrate that sub-surface objective and agenda.


    And then there is the possible (perhaps probable) scenario in which many harboring (for whatever reasons) assorted unhappy or ill feelings toward the AOLA or the Church or religion generally want to see the document-release contribute to a ‘justification’ of their feelings. In this scenario the documents are not material to be carefully examined, but merely ‘totems’ to be waved about while the usual and conventional mantras are intoned with more or less vivid and robust voice.


    Myself, I am simply trying to follow the documents, having no familiarity with AOLA now or decades ago, and simply going with the texts of the documents as they appear. I am accepting the general surface claim that this ‘about’ criminal cover-up and conspiracy and I am looking as carefully as I can at the documents to see if they support such assertions and claims.


    This discrepancy or disconnect, I would say, is why we have been seeing here some strong expressions of emotional upset and yet so little factual analysis or demonstration: whether they realize it or not, emotionally-involved persons don’t want to actually say (‘admit’, if you want to sharpen the point a bit) clearly what their expectations and objective in regard to the document-release really are.


    So this is a complicated ball of wax, and far more complicated – it would seem – than many of the proponents want to discuss.

  48. Fitasafiddle says:

    Rudyard Kipling said it best; "It needs a very clever woman to manage a fool."

    There is no woman clever enough for you, Publion.


  49. Delphin says:

    Fitsandkniptions: try working out the old gray matter.

    "Stupid as a man, say the women; cowardly as a woman, say the men; stupidity in a woman is unwomanly". Friedrich Nietzsche (how "fit"ing for you)-

    Time to refuel the broom and sweep-away before someone drops a house on you-

  50. Anon says:

    I was reading the LA files yesterday, sorrry don't recall exactly what priest. Was surprised to see a church letter to a victim say "Sorry the LA AD can't help pay for your therapy, the priest has to pay you". How does priest afford that? Then they dismiss their bankruptcy and pay $600 MM ?

    This site is useful. If you ignore the rancor and remarks there are links to so much info I was not aware of that highlight more Chruch wrong doing that which I was aware. Like the Boston Phoenix reporting.