Bishop Admits to Promoting Sexually Abusive Priest
Bishop Thomas Daily admitted in testimony made public yesterday to promoting Paul Shanley two decades ago to head a Boston parish, despite knowing that Shanley had openly expressed his approval of sexual relations between men and boys, according to the Boston Globe. Daily is currently the bishop of New York’s Brooklyn Diocese today. Shanley, now retired from priesthood, was indicted in June of six counts of indecent assault and battery on children younger than 14 as well as 10 counts of child rape of children younger than 11 years old, including two six-year-olds, according to CNN.com. The abuse took place over a ten-year span from 1979 to 1989.
The Boston Globe reports that this is not the only time that Daily has assisted abusive priests in covering their tracks. Police testimony reveals that in 1977, Daily promised to get help for Rev. Edward T. Kelley after a police officer caught him partially clad in a vehicle with a 19-year-old man. However, Kelley remained in parishes and did not receive treatment for another 16 years. According to Newsday, Kelley is currently the subject of several lawsuits brought against him by men who claim that Kelley sexually abused them during the mid-1960s into the 1980s. Kelley was suspended from active ministry in 1993. Though he has not been active in the Church since 1986, he has not been defrocked. Daily also ensured that the Rev. George J. Rosenkranz would not face charges after being caught in a department store restroom with another man; in this case, charges against the priest were dropped, but the other man was prosecuted for “lewd conduct,” according to the Globe.
The Vatican recently rejected a policy for dealing with priests accused of sexual abuse adopted by the US Conference of Catholic Bishops in June. Despite being called a “zero-tolerance” policy, the “Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People” merely removes a priest convicted of abuse from his parish and forbids him from engaging in public presentations. The provisions do not completely remove sex offenders from priesthood, nor do the policies address accountability for those bishops who knowingly transferred abusive priests from parish to parish, allowing these priests to continue their sexual abuse of hundreds of children, both girls and boys. The pope particularly objected to the requirement in the policy that all allegations of sexual abuse must be passed on to law enforcement authorities.
Media Resources: Boston Globe 10/29/02; Newsday 10/29/02; Associated Press 9/22/02; CNN.com 6/20/02; Feminist Daily News Wire