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Clergy Sex Abuse Victims - Prisoners in a Legal Web of Deceit & Freedom of Religion Abuse!

Message Debby Bodkin
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As a Catholic wife, mother and public advocate for clergy sex abuse victims and their families, the clergy sex abuse crisis that erupted in 2002 has revealed serious denials of justice.  Victims of clergy sex abuse are prisoners in a never-ending legal web of deceit and freedom of religion abuse.  What happened to accountability in the United States for sex crimes committed by employees of religious institutions?         


Thanks to California's 2003 Sex Abuse Law, public records reveal the urgency for the return of justice to clergy sex abuse victims and their families.  Without full disclosure and accountability, victims of sex abuse will continue as prisoners in a legal web of deceit and freedom of religion abuse.  Recent examples... 


Family and Health Reasons:  As recently reported in a March 26 court filing, Cardinal Norberto Rivera, who oversees the Archdiocese of Mexico City, says he told Los Angeles Cardinal Roger Mahony that a priest, who's now wanted on criminal charges of child rape, was moving from Mexico to Los Angeles for "family and health reasons."  It's important to note that the phrase "family and health reasons" was used within the Church to warn that a priest suffers from some sort of problem, as stated in Cardinal Rivera's written declaration.


Mental Reservation Church Doctrine:  According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, "When it is made publicly, a statement contrary to the truth takes on a particular gravity.  In court it becomes a false witness.  When it is under oath, it is perjury."  As a Catholic wife, mother and legal secretary for the past 25 years, what happens when a statement contrary to the truth is not made public?  Do the rules concerning mental reservation church doctrine change?


Sexual Predator Paid $100,000.  In 2005, an employee of the Diocese of Orange, accused of sexual misconduct with a minor female student, sued the Diocese of Orange years after his employment with the Diocese, based on defamation causes of action.  It has been reported that the Diocese of Orange paid $100,000 to this sexual predator, who admitted having sex with one of his minor female students, to dismiss the lawsuit against the Diocese.  What happened to the National Charter for the Protections of Children?   


QUESTION:  Is anyone paying attention? Without justice there will never be peace and without peace, faith and our country's laws are empty.

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As an amateur writer, mother, wife and legal secretary for the past 25 years, my passion for the courage of clergy sex abuse victims, their families and mandated reporters, who made a choice to protect children, before their own career security and (more...)
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