Church airs list of priests accused of sexual abuse
Nearly 10 years after a worldwide clergy sexual abuse crisis erupted in the Boston Archdiocese, Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley today released a long-awaited roster of 159 archdiocesan clerics who have been accused of sexually abusing children.
But O’Malley’s action was immediately criticized by Attorney General Martha Coakley and advocates for clergy abuse victims because it lists only those priests who have already been publicly accused, and omits the names of dozens of accused priests from religious orders and other dioceses, as well as those who left the priesthood before accusations were leveled againt them.
“Those names should be disclosed in the interest of the victims and public safety,” Coakley said. “While today was an important first step, we urge the leaders of the Archdiocese to complete this effort toward transparency and publicly disclose the names of those accused from other orders and those who were already laicized.”
O’Malley compiled his list after reviewing all of the abuse allegations in the files of the archdiocese, some going back as many as 70 years, Church officials said, in his most recent attempt to assure parishioners and the public that the Church is doing all in its power to protect children while assisting survivors of abusive clergy.
“The Archdiocese of Boston’s commitment and responsibility is to protect children and to ensure that the tragedy of sexual abuse is never repeated,” O’Malley said in a statement that accompanied a posting of the list on the official website of the archdiocese at 2 p.m. today.