December, 2002 – What has happened in the last eleven months in the life of the Church in our nation is something that I could never have imagined.

December, 2002 – What has happened in the last eleven months in the life of the Church in our nation is something that I could never have imagined. Having grown up in the Catholic faith, in a family which has always loved the Church and had the deepest respect and affection for her pastors, it has been most difficult for me to comprehend the seemingly unending stories of the sexual abuse of children and young people by Catholic priests and bishops, recounted in the newspapers and through the other communications media. It has been equally difficult to comprehend the reports of the callous manner of handling such abuse on the part of certain Church authorities. What has been a scandal for so many in the Church has also been a scandal for me as a bishop of the Church. I have to confess to times of profound anger with individuals who have perpetrated such crimes and with bishops who have not taken appropriate action to discipline the perpetrators and to protect children and young people from such profound harm.