Bishop Michael Jarrell, a decade removed from the Diocese of Lafayette and its insurers paying out $26 million to the families of children molested by priests, doesn’t see the point in releasing the names of the guilty.
In a recent post from The Advertiser, it was revealed that the news site had queried for the names, but were rebuffed.
“Bishop Jarrell sees no purpose in such action,” Monsignor Richard Greene, media liaison, wrote in response to The Daily Advertiser‘s request for the priests’ names.
The Advertiser claims that it made the request after sworn statements from the 1990s came to light recently, including allegations by a young man that a priest still ministering in Lafayette sexually abused him. The priest and Diocese have denied the young man’s allegations.
“The obvious purpose is that failing to reveal these names may pose a serious threat or danger to even more innocent children in this diocese than these men have already injured,” Ray Mouton wrote in an email to The Advertiser.
More from the report:
Mouton is the attorney who represented Gilbert Gauthe in the first widely known case of pedophilia by a Catholic priest in the Diocese of Lafayette. Now living in France, Mouton campaigns for the rights of survivors of abuse, co-authored a 1985 report hailed by the media as the most significant document issued in the priest sex abuse scandal, and wrote In God’s House, a novel drawn from his extensive experience dealing with this issue.
In 2004, Jarrell said the Roman Catholic Diocese of Lafayette and its insurers paid about $26 million to 123 victims of priests who served in the diocese between 1950 and 2002.
The names of those priests were never made public despite policies by the Catholic Church to be transparent about child sexual abuse issues.
“It is unconscionable, not to mention unchristian, for a Catholic bishop to shield and protect the identity of men whom he has stated have had credible complaints of sex abuse made against them for which his diocese paid financial settlements for victims, for these men are criminals who have committed heinous sex crimes against children,” Mouton wrote.
(Check the entire story out here.)
Recently, The Inquisitr hinted that the priest sex abuse scandal may be further reaching than originally thought. What do you think, readers? Does Bishop Michael Jarrell owe it to the victims and the public to release the names of the priests accused at the Diocese of Lafayette? Share your thoughts in our comments section.
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