Fresno diocese indefinitely suspends LGBTQ Ministry

Bishop Armando Ochoa made decision after becoming aware of claims the ministry “may have evolved beyond its primary mission”

A ministry geared toward the Catholic gay community has been suspended by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Fresno. The reasons behind the suspension are unclear. Called the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning) Ministry, the group was touted as one of-its-kind in the diocese, and established in 2015 by John Prandini. Teresa Dominguez, chancellor at the … [Read more...]

For 13 years, they knew

Why are we only hearing the story of this L.A. bishop now?

The Archdiocese of Los Angeles knew for at least 13 years that one of its bishops had been accused of sexual abuse at a parish but did not inform the public until this week, despite repeated vows to disclose such information. The archdiocese, which over the years has paid out a record $740 million in settlements to victims of priest abuse, had promised to publicize the names … [Read more...]

“The Church will spare no effort”

With his hands visibly shaking, Pope Francis spoke directly to abusive clergy, telling them to prepare to face justice, both human and divine

Pope Francis strongly condemned clerical sex abuse in his annual Christmas speech to the Roman Curia Friday, promising that the Church leadership will never again cover-up abuse or treat such cases lightly. “Let it be clear that before these abominations the Church will spare no effort to do all that is necessary to bring to justice whosoever has committed such crimes. The … [Read more...]

Incapable of investigating themselves

Illinois attorney general blasts handling of sexual abuse allegations by state's dioceses, says names of at least 500 accused priests withheld

The Catholic Church in Illinois withheld the names of at least 500 priests accused of sexual abuse of minors, the state’s attorney general said Wednesday in a scathing report that accused the church of failing victims by neglecting to investigate their allegations. The preliminary report by Attorney General Lisa Madigan concludes that the Catholic dioceses in Illinois are … [Read more...]

What, exactly, does “credibly accused” mean?

Different dioceses using different standards

In a recent interview with Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, archbishop of Galveston-Houston and president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), DiNardo was asked about a pledge that all dioceses in Texas would release the names of priests credibly accused of sexual abuse. “‘Credibly accused’ is being worked out in terms of our lawyers even now as we speak,” … [Read more...]

Vatican asks bishops to meet with victims ahead of February summit

Letter to participating bishops says meetings with victims are necessary "to learn first-hand the suffering that they have endured"

Organizers of the Vatican’s February meeting on sexual abuse have sent a letter to the participating bishops asking them to meet with abuse victims in advance of the gathering. “We urge each episcopal conference president to reach out and visit with victim survivors of clergy sex abuse in your respective countries prior to the meeting in Rome, to learn first-hand the suffering … [Read more...]

LA auxiliary bishop resigns over allegation of sexually abusing minor

Pope Francis accepts resignation of Auxiliary Bishop Alexander Salazar after archdiocese’s oversight board found allegation to be credible; Bishop Salazar denies any wrongdoing

Pope Francis accepted the resignation of Auxiliary Bishop Alexander Salazar of Los Angeles Wednesday after the archdiocese’s oversight board found a prior allegation of misconduct with a minor to be credible. Salazar’s alleged misconduct, which is said to have occurred while he was a parish priest in the 1990s, was previously investigated by both law enforcement in 2002 and … [Read more...]

Not magic

Priest brings 150 relics of the saints to three parishes in the San Francisco archdiocese, explains their role in the Catholic faith

Three years ago, Church of the Epiphany parishioners Bea Zamora and husband Deacon Chito Zamora, first approached a priest about bringing his traveling relics exposition to the Bay Area. This December, their hope was fulfilled, as Companions of the Cross Father Carlos Martins visited three parishes in the Archdiocese of San Francisco with 150 relics of the saints. “It’s a very … [Read more...]

A state crime

Pope Francis doubles down on death penalty, calls it a lingering value of bygone centuries when “the instruments available to us for the protection of society were lacking”

The death penalty is always a rejection of the Gospel and of human dignity, and therefore must be rejected by all countries, Pope Francis told the Delegation of the International Commission against the Death Penalty on Monday. In his meeting with the delegation at the Vatican, the Pope set aside his prepared remarks and gave an impromptu address. In his prepared text, which … [Read more...]

San Diego priest found guilty of sexual assault on seminarian

Following conviction of Fr. Juan Garcia Castillo, San Diego diocese immediately removes him from ministry

A California priest was convicted Monday of sexually assaulting a seminarian. After his conviction, Fr. Juan Garcia Castillo will be listed on California’s sex offender registry, and could face up to six months of incarceration. During a week-long trial, the San Diego seminarian assaulted by Castillo testified that the priest approached him Feb. 4 in a restaurant bathroom and … [Read more...]