By providing facts about the Catholic Church’s horrific child rape scandal, The NY Times completely discredits Cardinal Egan — and he deserves it:
“I never should have said that,” Cardinal Egan said in a combative interview with Connecticut magazine in which he offered a heartless and bewildering defense of his time as bishop in Bridgeport, Conn. Court records and the church’s lay investigation showed him at fault in covering up the scandal and protecting rogue priests accused of abusing children.
“I don’t think we did anything wrong,” Cardinal Egan declared. He accused the news media of exaggerating the scandal, despite the American church’s admission of culpability in having to dismiss 700 suspect priests across a three-year period. “The fact that sex abuse becomes overpowering in people’s eyes, that’s a part of life,” said the cardinal. He maintained there was no obligation to report abusive priests, although the American hierarchy promised to do so and Connecticut law has long required it.
Court records that the church fought to keep secret revealed cases in which then-Bishop Egan did not alert secular authorities in Bridgeport, failed to aggressively investigate allegations, moved offending priests to other parishes and authorized hush-money payments.
In one case, Bishop Egan kept an accused abuser working for five years after receiving a warning and did not suspend him until after a lawsuit was filed. In another, the diocese did not report potential allegations of statutory rape of a teenager impregnated by a priest.
What’s scary and really disturbing is that Egan is probably giving voice to what many of the Catholic hierarchy think. They don’t think they did anything wrong. I suspect a lot of them aren’t sorry, but they are really annoyed that they are being held responsible. They think they are above the law. It’s despicable.
Of course, while Egan was defending the Church for its handling of the scandal where priests raped young children for decades, his colleagues were on a rampage against birth control. For some reason, many politicians and pundits still think the Bishops have moral authority.