Yesterday parishioners at every church in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles were read a letter of apology for the Catholic Church’s role in cloaking pedophile priests from law enforcement. The letter was written by Archbishop Jose Gomez. An excerpt:
My brothers and sisters in Christ, This week we are releasing the files of priests who sexually abused children while they were serving in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. These files document abuses that happened decades ago. But that does not make them less serious. I find these files to be brutal and painful reading. The behavior described in these files is terribly sad and evil. There is no excuse, no explaining away what happened to these children.
The priests involved had the duty [to] be spiritual fathers but they failed. We need to acknowledge that terrible failure today. We need to pray for everyone who has ever been hurt by members of the Church. And we need to continue to support the long and painful process of healing their wounds and restoring the trust that was broken. I cannot undo the failing of the past that we find in these pages. Reading these files, reflecting on the wounds that were caused, has been the saddest experience I’ve had since becoming your Archbishop in 2011.
My predecessor, retired Cardinal Roger Mahony, has expressed his sorrow for his failure to fully protect young people entrusted to his care. Effectively [sic] immediately, I have informed Cardinal Mahony that he will no longer have any administrative or public duties. Auxiliary Bishop Thomas Curry has also publicly apologized for his decisions while serving as Vicar for Clergy. I have accepted his request to be relieved of his responsibility as the Regional Bishop of Santa Barbara. As for the status of Cardinal Roger Mahony and Bishop Thomas Curry: they remain bishops in good standing in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, with full rights to celebrate the Holy Sacraments of the Church and to minister to the faithful without restriction.
(Via JMG reader Keith)