The following is an excerpt of a letter from Bishop Barber of Oakland:
Dear sisters and brothers in Christ,
In the wake of recent reports of scandal in the Catholic Church, I have decided the Diocese of Oakland will release the names of all clergy — diocesan, religious order and extern priests — who have been credibly accused of sexually abusing a minor. This is the latest step in the ongoing commitment of the Diocese of Oakland to stop the scourge of sexual abuse of minors and vulnerable adults. This public accountability will allow you and others in our community to see we are keeping our promises. We have nothing to hide. It is the right thing to do.
I anticipate the list of those credibly accused will be ready for publication in approximately 45 days. With the large number of international and religious order clergy who have served in our diocese in the past, it will take some time to verify certain information. I have instructed my staff to prioritize this work while also recognizing the importance of making the list as accurate as possible.
A former FBI official who is well-known as an advocate for justice in clergy sexual abuse, Dr. Kathleen McChesney, will assist in our review of clergy files and the audit of our processes. After the completion of our process review and the publication of our credibly accused list, Dr. McChesney and her team will do a full review of our files to ensure our list is as accurate as possible. This second review will be completed after the first of the year.
With the assurance of my prayers and blessing, I am.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
The Most Rev. Michael C. Barber, SJ
Bishop of Oakland
Full letter at Catholic Voice Oakland.
San Bernardino releases priest abusers list
The following is an excerpt of a letter from Bishop Barnes of San Bernardino:
Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
As we continue to come to grips with the past and present realities of the clergy sexual abuse crisis, I have made the decision to make public the names of all priests who have ministered in the Diocese of San Bernardino that have credible allegations of sexual abuse of a minor.
When we read this list we are pained to think of the many lives that were impacted by the sinful and unlawful acts of those priests who committed them. Some will recognize names on this list, more will recognize the parish communities where they served. It makes this crisis more local to us, and may increase our feelings of sadness and outrage.
I again offer my apologies and my deepest regrets to those who were victimized by the men on this list, and to all of the faithful of our Diocese who have been scandalized by this shameful chapter in our Church’s history. Apologies, at this point, can seem hollow and I regret that because I can imagine how painful this has been in the lives of many victims. Still, I do want to state my sincere apology.
Some may ask, ‘what has the Church done’ to address this problem in the years since it first came to light. Since 2002, we have:
- Adopted a zero tolerance policy for clergy with credible allegations of abuse, and worked closely with law enforcement in all reports of abuse.
- Implemented fingerprinting and extensive background checks for all clergy
and lay employees in our Diocese
- Made mandatory for all Diocesan ministers the VIRTUS training program
to educate in how to recognize and prevent the sexual abuse of children
- Established the Diocesan Office of Child and Youth Protection to ensure that all Safe Environment policies and our Pastoral Code of Conduct are followed
Most Reverend Gerald R. Barnes
Full letter at Diocese of San Bernardino website.
To see the list of priests who have been found to be credibly accused, click here.