3rd suit filed against Philadelphia archdiocese charging sex abuse
In a lawsuit filed Wednesday, Francis Finnegan claimed he was sexually abused by a priest in the late 1960s.
March 16th, 2011
05:02 PM ET

3rd suit filed against Philadelphia archdiocese charging sex abuse

By Sarah Hoye, CNN

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (CNN) - Another new sexual abuse lawsuit was filed Wednesday against the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua, Cardinal Justin Rigali and other archdiocese staffers on behalf of a Pennsylvania man, clergy abuse attorneys said.

This latest lawsuit is now the third civil suit filed within the last month. A grand jury report, released in February, not only led to charges against four priests and one parochial school teacher but has opened the floodgates for civil litigation.

In its wake, alleged victims of sexual abuse are suing the archdiocese and other high-ranking church officials because the report states the archdiocese knowingly withheld the identity of predator priests.

These lawsuits were filed in response to new information released in the 2011 grand jury report that involves Monsignor William Lynn, who is facing criminal charges for endangering the welfare of children and having knowledge about perpetrators. Lynn served as the secretary for clergy under the former Philadelphia Archbishop Bevilacqua.

In the case of Francis Finnegan filed Wednesday, Finnegan claimed the Rev. John Kline, who was assigned to St. Francis Xavier Parish and was a longtime teacher at Roman Catholic High School in Philadelphia, sexually abused him while on vacation with the family sometime between 1968 and 1969.

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia would not comment on the lawsuit.

During a news conference, Finnegan stood outside the archdiocese building surrounded by his wife, three children and sister, while his parents looked on from a distance.

"It has to stop. They haven't changed anything," Finnegan said. "I stand here because I don't want somebody who is 7 today to be me in 40 years.

"I don't want somebody to continue to be covered up and sheltered by the Catholic church," he said.

Finnegan, now 49, said he repressed the memories of the sexual contact with Kline until roughly three years ago. The memory flashes are like looking at random photos creating a mosaic in his head, he said.

Kline was a regular part of the family, Finnegan said. He ate dinner with them every Thursday for decades, and often traveled with them on vacation. His mother was a secretary for the parish for 40 years, where she and her husband still belong. Kline also co-officiated at Finnegan's wedding.

Finnegan and his older brother, Jack, 58, who now lives in California, were estranged until a few years ago. After they reunited, his brother revealed his own secret, Finnegan said.

"Father John Leo Kline assaulted me, and nine years earlier assaulted my brother," he said. "This man was intimately connected with the family."

Finnegan's suit alleges that the archdiocese "actively concealed their knowledge of Kline's previous offenses, lied to parishioners and created a sham sexual abuse victim assistance program for the archdiocese."

Kline, who was not named in either the 2011 grand jury report or a 2005 grand jury report, retired in 1981 and has since passed away, said Finnegan's attorney, Marci Hamilton. Their suit alleges fraud and conspiracy by the archdiocese.

"This is yet another case in which the archdiocese has let down one of Philadelphia's children," Hamilton said. "This is just an example of what we're learning every day about the harm that this archdiocese has inflicted on not just survivors of abuse, but their entire extended family."

Sometime between 2007 and 2008, Finnegan contacted the Archdiocese Victims Assistance coordinator by phone. He was contacted once by the archdiocese and has not heard from them in four years, he said.

"It's not like they have a personal relationship with me, they don't," he said.

Finnegan's other attorney, Dan Monahan - who also filed the suits on behalf of the previous two alleged victims of sexual abuse - said he would file as many lawsuits as he has to.

"With each week we get more and more phone calls and contacts, not only from Philadelphia, but from across the country," Monahan said. "This has hopefully awakened the people either who lived in the archdiocese or currently live in the archdiocese."

This year's grand jury report is the second one on priests' sexual abuse in Philadelphia, and the first time that a Catholic church leader has been charged criminally for an alleged cover-up.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Catholic Church • Courts • Pennsylvania • United States

soundoff (247 Responses)
  1. Kirman

    Kimberley I think you're right! People may claim they innocently desgined a logo without anything memeingful but closer, logical, inspection can reveal a myriad of meanings both intentional and unfounded.I hadn't heard about the UK logo issue! I did a little internet searching and found a couple of scratchy examples. If you have any links to the old logo and the story behind it, please let me know!

    April 1, 2012 at 10:34 pm |
  2. bitcoin

    m20wgy3 y9xxe9j diejmpx ief94xv i9btipk.

    September 20, 2011 at 10:43 am |
  3. tryecrot

    Yes there should realize the opportunity to RSS commentary, quite simply, CMS is another on the blog.

    August 28, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  4. deek

    Imagine what would happen if a priest abused the son of a powerful family, perhaps an organized crime family?

    April 14, 2011 at 5:48 am |
  5. Vita

    I am Catholic, I don't agree with Gerald. Trying to make "comparison lists" of who else is a ped, is ridicolous. If he does the crime (any) he should do the time.

    The church don't want to acknowledge there is a problem, and so many area churches pretend all is well, they don't even want to talk about it.

    I am not giving my money to the coffers of the church.

    I am not acurrently attneding church.

    Forget the number of priests that are being caught, what about the numbers of kids they have abused? How many kids suffered? Thousands? How many at the hands of a single ped, and over the yeras the ped was "moved" and could start all over again?

    Gerald, you make a couple too "simplistic" statements.
    One is, Its a small minority compared to..
    (as in everybody does it)

    Two ..They should be punished, and I am sorry for the victims

    Three....You attack by stating..are you a Protestant? Gerald, don't you know that God see's no difference when he looks at his blood covering a "protestant" or a catholic? LOL. what are you thinking? .That our church is superior, and all people outside us are lost? That is a rule that the papacy made, not God. I don't agree with some of the man made rules in our church, for whether you like it or not, thats exactly what they are.
    You are making judgements against your own brothers and sisters in Christ, when you do that.

    Besides, public scholols and other things you cite, that this happens, are NOT in the leadership of following Jesus Christ. They are not representaitve of the church.
    ou make it sound like a priest can go to confession, turn around and molest again, and confess, and still have "authority" to forgive. Not so. The "authority" passed, cannot be broken, by disobedience and sin.. When it is, it is no longer.


    The LORD said to Moses, "Speak to Aaron and tell him: None of your
    descendants, of whatever generation, who has any defect shall come
    forward to offer up the food of his God. [Leviticus 21:16-17] – This passage sets limits for ordination into the priesthood.
    ** While this passage specifically refers to physical conditions, it should be understood to include –but would not be limited to– the following since moral disorders or inclinations thereto should be understood as being of graver concern: adultery, fornication, tr-ansve-st-itism, bes-tiality, er-oti-c fet-ish and other deviant behaviors. Including Ped-ophiles.

    In consideration of recent public exposure concerning ped-ophiles (in most cases these are pederasts, i.e., active ho-mo-se-x-uals practicing an-al (or oral) i-nterc-ourse with teenagers) in the Church the following passages from Scripture are referenced.

    You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; such a thing is an abomination. You shall not have ca-rnal relations with an animal, defiling yourself with it; nor shall a woman set herself in front of an animal to mate with it; such things are abhorrent. [Leviticus 18:22-23]
    You, however, whether natives or resident aliens, must keep my sta-t-u-tes and decrees forbidding all such abominations [Leviticus 18:26]
    Everyone who does any of these abominations shall be cut off from among his people. Heed my charge, then, not to defile yourselves by observing the abominable customs that have been observed before you. I, the LORD, am your God." [Leviticus 18:29-30]
    If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them shall be put to death for their abominable deed; they have forfeited their lives. [Leviticus 20:13]
    If a man has car-nal relations with an animal, the man shall be put to death, and the animal shall be slain. [Leviticus 20:15]

    The church claims some of these are ho-m-os-e-xuals

    Any act that would subject one to automatic excommunication 1 or that would warrant the death penalty under Old Testament law (these laws were approved by Jesus [Mt. 5:18] ) should be understood to disqualify any candidate for the clerical state. Also to be seen as morally excluded from the clerical state would be those guilty of notorious crimes, infiltrators into the Church, and members of secretive organizations such as the Freemasons who are forbidden the reception of Holy Communion 4 under the Code of Canon Law (1983 Code: Can. 1374 [modernist Church watered down version]; 1917 Code: Can. 2335). 5
    Cause for automatic excommunication also exists in regard to priests who culpably fail to teach the Word of God in its fullness, especially when having been advised of the deficiency and continues to refuse to correct the fault – a clear grave sin of omission the other sacraments a legal priest fulfills legal requirements and has the moral duty to appropriately council, admonish, instruct and approve or disapprove. The moral requirement is fulfilled by a valid recipient who must receive them from a legally ordained priest with legal standing. A morally ordained priest retains full legal and moral standing unless justly reproved and legally pe-n-alized. Unjust penalties are considered legally null.

    The point is being reached in the Church where the only viable alternative for removal of automatically excommunicated 1 bishops, of various ranks, from office is for people of faith to take matters into their own hands.

    Sincerely in Christ,
    Father David C. Trosch
    Feast of the Visitation
    May 31, 2002

    Love must be applied for eternal effect rather than being applied to temporal concerns and emotional reactions. False love in harmony with bad example has been the cause of many leaving the Church while retaining those who are complacent with the false teachings and bad examples of legal only priests

    March 19, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  6. Reality

    It only takes a few words to solve it all:

    to wit:

    There never was and never will be any angels i.e. no Gabriel, no Islam

    There was and never will be any bodily resurrections i.e. No Easter, no Christianity

    Abraham and Moses never existed.

    Added details upon request.

    March 19, 2011 at 12:11 am |
    • chief

      to wit..great point if it had anything to do with solving the problem of kids being abused....

      March 19, 2011 at 7:07 am |
    • Reality

      There was and never will be any bodily resurrections i.e. No Easter, no Christianity i.e. no priests.

      March 19, 2011 at 8:21 am |

    I was born and raised a Catholic, one of eight children. Many boys and girls at my school were molested including my brother Jim who died in a mental hospital. If you blindly send your children into this environment without educating your self about the Church practices on pedophiles, you are an unfit parent. At least take the time to learn and don't turn blindly from the truth to the comfort of your rosary . The Catholic Church is a plague on the world. The harm done is spreading like a domino effect. The Church allowed these men to abuse multiple times in multiple places without fear of being caught and prosecuted. Abused children become abusers. The Roman Catholic Church is the incarnation of the Devil himself, posing as a lamb as you knew he would. Wake Up! Protect your children. Stop the cycle of abuse

    March 18, 2011 at 10:29 am |
    • gerald

      THe problem is a societal one. You make it out to be a Catholic one. Tell me what percentage of 38million is 10,000? 38 million is the number of abused in the us as children. You make it sound like it had to have been all done by priests. It is sad that it happened in Catholic schools. Agreed. It has happened in Public schools as much or more. It happens on sports teams by coaches as much or more. All posts like yours do is point at a cut when there is a laceration of an artery in this country. Not to minimize the cut which is infected.

      March 18, 2011 at 12:32 pm |
    • chief

      name one of these societal organizations that created a place like the Vianney Renewal Center for rehab of their pedaphiles.... apparently the problem was big enough and know enough inside the church to fund it?

      March 18, 2011 at 12:58 pm |
    • gerald

      Chief, did you listen to the video. Some of these people were convicted. The parol boards (that's not the Church) let some of these people be in these centers. The GOVERNMENT KNEW!!!! I don't know when the particular center talked about was built. The one in this diocese I think started in the 90's. Again what neighborhood would you like them in. The government is not putting them in jail.

      March 18, 2011 at 1:31 pm |
    • gerald

      again what would you have them do? Turn them loose? That's what other Churches do. Check out the work of phil jenkins if you still think this is just a Catholic problem. Do a search on baptist peds. Or go to reformation.com. Your a broken record and a bearer of false witness chief but that's just the plank in your eye.

      March 18, 2011 at 1:35 pm |
    • chief

      re gerald.... the baptists and others dont have resorts for their peds... they dont hide them.... if there is one they are outed and turned over to the police... and the other groups dont turn a blind eye to the problem.... i will take my chances on bearing false witess..... but at least im for the kids well being....

      March 18, 2011 at 1:49 pm |
    • gerald

      Chief, you missed the point. LISTEN TO THE VIDEO. These peds were turned over to the police. Do you understand statute of limitations. That applies to ANY RELIGION or NON RELIGION. Baptist pastors would have got off under it as well. Baptist pastors would have been put on parole as well. They would have moved to houses in neighborhoods chief. These centers aren't for the purpose of hiding them because they are KNOWN OFFENDERS in these centers. EVERYBODY KNOWS IT. I don't know what to do for your chief. You don't seem to get it.

      March 18, 2011 at 1:54 pm |
    • gerald

      How does lying about me protect kids? It just feeds our superiority ego is all.

      March 18, 2011 at 1:55 pm |
    • chief

      gotta go back to my cell now

      March 18, 2011 at 2:06 pm |

    Many of these known pedophiles were permitted by the Church to operate for 40 or 50 years. They were sent to multiple places, every time they got caught, they were moved to a new place. Even if only 5% of Priests are pedophiles, the damage is widespread due to Church policies. Many other Priests and Nuns are also guilty because they knew and did not tell what they saw every day.. Oftern, reports from other Church members were ignored by Bevilaqua and reporting was discouraged by Church Authorities. The crime is huge, horrendous and worldwide. Phila is not unique. This is happening all over the World. Every investigation yields the same exact result. This is a slam dunk case of racketeering that will go unpunished

    March 18, 2011 at 10:17 am |

    I urge all of you that are posting on this blog to read the Grand Juries Reports. The first one from 2005 and the most recent one from 2011. Only then can you understand what they have actually done. It is appalling and sick. Known pedophiles were recycled every time they got caught and the Church feared a scandal. Controlling scandal, reducing payments to victims, and protecting pedophile priests was first priority for the Vatican and Bevilaqua. Please read them, they are both available on the internet. YOu cannot send your children into this environment after reading this report. If you do, you certainly can't say you didn't know what was going to happen to them.

    March 18, 2011 at 10:12 am |
  10. chief

    i am sick of the apologists.... if 5 percent are peds... then reduce the priesthood by 5% and increase the prison population by the same amout... broad brushed comments about priests ? lookup club ped Vianney Renewal Center and the Servants of the Paraclete... the church has known about the problem ..... meanwhile good catholics keep saying this crap about its only 5% of priests, it happens everywhere, its just accusations.... makes me sick ... in the meantime while they are counting thier beads and uselessly repeating the Lord prayer .... more kids are being abused

    March 18, 2011 at 10:00 am |
    • chief

      its stories like minchael bauhmanns that will change things.... not apologists

      michaelbaumann dot wordpress dot com

      March 18, 2011 at 10:06 am |
    • gerald

      More irrational jibber jabber. Ya, that does alot of good, just randomly take 5% of the priests and put them in jail. No chief you have to find which 5% are guilty if it is 5% and it's not that high. You seem to think that everything is know. That every one can be convicted. You make it out to be simple. That only shows you are simple minded. You keep throwing around the 10,000 number knowing that a significant number of them were not convicted. I believe it was 6000. Your posts only show how irrational you are. But God bless you.

      March 18, 2011 at 12:25 pm |
    • gerald

      By the way Chief, I don't believe you do anything for the abused. You just post rants on these boards that in the end do nothing for victims.

      March 18, 2011 at 12:26 pm |
    • chief

      hey gerald..... what about club ped Vianney Renewal Center .... a center for pedaphile priests.? .... oh no, none of those sick priests were guilty and oh no, the church didnt protect them, and oh no its a wide spread problem.... the more you speak the more you reveal.... most likely your a priest ...... .... name another organization that calls itself religious that has or has had a retreat for its own pedaphiles.... i think i hear a bell.... is it shift change

      March 18, 2011 at 12:56 pm |
    • gerald

      Chief, no I am not a priest. No I have not said the problem is not widespread. It is. Yes there are places where priests have preyed on children are kept away from children. There is one here in Minnesota where eleven of them are housed. You complain when the church has them in parishes then you complain when they put them away. Why aren't they in jail? Because the Church is protecting them by putting them in these places? No. Because the Church is protecting children. They are not in jail because of something called Statute of limitations. That is US Law. Not Church law. What do you want the Church to do Chief? More ranting nonsense rather than anything rational. Like I said simple mine.

      March 18, 2011 at 1:02 pm |
    • chief

      hey gerald.... i will phrase it like this... i have worked and volunteered in psychiatric and couseling centers that were and are religious in nature as well as secular..... my name is on many of the oh so holy windows of these oh so holy cathedrals in a number of catholic churchs in the north east ..... and you are a pathetic apologist and are an accomplice to the crimes due to your diversion tactics ( which are really weak ) ...

      March 18, 2011 at 1:03 pm |
    • chief

      re gerlad ... what do i want the church to do? i want it beyond reproach... in corp america, if you are a man and accused of something regarding a woman.... you have to prove your innocense... male doctors make it a practice now of requiring female nurses present during examinations of women..... the church shoudl dismiss those who have these issues, they should turn them over to the police, they should eb registered as predetors,.... no way, put them in pedaphile retreats... dont give me this crap about innocent until proven guilty...... way too many of this sick fools have repeated their crimes.... make it where they cant do it again... btw... the God Bless you thing is blaspemhous coming from someone who is part of the bigger problem with the catholic church

      March 18, 2011 at 1:10 pm |
    • gerald

      Most other churches would cut them loose to society where they would by a house in a neighborhood next to you and you wouldn't even know about it because with the statute of limitations they would not be convicted and not have to register as a s-e-x offender. Sound good to you? Like I said you don't know even simple concepts of law and your not thinking for protection of kids. Your just thinking vengence. God will take care of that but you can't leave it to him.

      March 18, 2011 at 1:11 pm |
    • chief

      re gerald.... as dog returns to its owm vomit, so does a fool to his folly....

      March 18, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
    • chief

      re gerald.... "obviosly wrong with conviction" ... the eloquent holy word vomit you spew reminds me of the priest in "gran torino" .... a stupd under 30 brainwashed catholic with no wife and maybe a boyfriend... HA

      March 18, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
    • gerald

      "a stupd under 30 brainwashed catholic with no wife and maybe a boyfriend... "

      Hey chief, ever heard the phrase "thou shall not bear false witness"? Hmmmm.... We'll just add this to your list of offenses against GOD! I have a wife and 8 kids. Just plain stupid. God bless you you need it.

      March 18, 2011 at 1:27 pm |
    • chief

      re gerald... i was part right .... you didnt deny the boyfriend

      March 18, 2011 at 1:44 pm |
    • gerald

      Nope. Your a liar there two.

      March 18, 2011 at 1:49 pm |
    • chief


      March 18, 2011 at 2:07 pm |
  11. False Reality

    "There are lower percentages of atheists in the country than Christians. You use this to your advantage in distorting the facts."

    Actually, in 2008 the Journal of Religion & Society did a study on this, comparing more secular nations versus Religious based countries and found that the more secular nations were much, much less likely to commit violent crimes. Countries like the US with a high religious population are 5X more likely to commit violent crimes according to that study.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:51 pm |
    • mollyd

      The Catholic Church has proven that religion truly sucks.......

      March 17, 2011 at 3:09 pm |
  12. False Reality

    "Atheists abuse as much or more than Christians. I would contend more."

    Proof for this statement? Otherwise you are just making it up to fit your world view.

    March 17, 2011 at 1:41 pm |
    • gerald

      WHy would you think they abuse less? I think it's a pretty logical statement. Numbers aren't available but there is no reason to believe otherwise. Why do you insist on defending atheists as being more moral than everyone else?

      March 17, 2011 at 1:47 pm |
    • False Reality

      "WHy would you think they abuse less? I think it's a pretty logical statement. Numbers aren't available but there is no reason to believe otherwise. Why do you insist on defending atheists as being more moral than everyone else?"

      Because without proof you are just making up information to fit your worldview. You can't assert that Atheists are just as likely OR MORE as you stated without citing evidence.

      March 17, 2011 at 1:53 pm |
    • Nonimus

      "WHy would you think they abuse less?"
      "...there is no reason to believe otherwise."
      "I think it's a pretty logical statement."

      This explains so much. Normally people need a reason to accept something as true. You appear to accept things as true by default and then require a reason to unaccept it.

      March 17, 2011 at 2:47 pm |
    • geraldh

      Waiting for your proof to counter my claim.... Waiting for some sort of reasoning that makes my reasoning unlikely. I admit mine is just a theory but it has basis in logic. Why do you defend the other position? Evidence?

      March 17, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
    • Nonimus

      What basis in logic?

      The Bobinator above gave a rational reason to think otherwise, which was that proportionally Atheists are underrepresented in prisons.

      March 17, 2011 at 3:32 pm |
    • Nonimus

      And False Reality posted a similar argument just below.

      March 17, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
    • gerald



      Nuf said.

      March 17, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
  13. Jcork

    I think the church (and its affiliates) should give up child abuse for Lent. This world truly would change in 40 days, if that happened!

    March 17, 2011 at 10:49 am |
  14. Gaunt

    I do not fault the Church for the abuse, I suspect abuse of children happens at about the same rate among any group compelled to celebacy. I fault them for knowingly and intentionaly hiding the facts of mass abuse for decades, protecting the perpetrators and hiding the crimes.

    Abuse is the act of an individual. The coverup was the act of an entire organisation that KNEW what it was doing was wrong, and did it anyways.

    March 17, 2011 at 10:46 am |
    • Jcork

      Great point. Very true. And doesn't that mean we need to look closer at what is going on in religious organizations? I sure think so. The church is about as moral as my toothbrush and as hypocritical as most conservatives.

      March 17, 2011 at 10:52 am |
    • mollyd

      Being celibate DOES NOT turn one into a child molester........that is utter nonsense. These pigs became priests to get access to small children, all over the world, and ROME on down protected them.......HOW SICK IS THAT???????

      March 17, 2011 at 3:12 pm |
  15. Reality

    Another "vomit-inducing" lawsuit that will hasten the following:

    Recognizing the flaws, follies and frauds in the foundations of Islam, Judaism and Christianity by the "bowers", kneelers" and "pew peasants" will converge these religions into some simple rules of life. No koran, bible, clerics, nuns, monks, imams, evangelicals, ayatollahs, rabbis, professors of religion or priests needed or desired.

    Ditto for houses of "worthless worship" aka mosques, churches, basilicas, cathedrals, temples and synagogues.-–

    March 17, 2011 at 7:51 am |
    • gerald


      Atheists abuse as much or more than Christians. I would contend more. So how's that simple set of rules making anything better when one is an atheist? Answer it's not. You need to change your moniker because you are not reality.

      March 17, 2011 at 9:50 am |
    • Reality

      "Do No Harm" fits one and all and replaces all the houses and religions of "worthless worship".

      March 17, 2011 at 10:23 am |
    • The Bobinator

      > Atheists abuse as much or more than Christians. I would contend more.

      You state it as if it's a fact. Where are you getting your number from?

      From prison statistics we see more religious people in jail per person then atheists. We see more christians in jail, per person then atheists. So it's undenyable that your statement is not fact, but rather a lie you've convinced yourself as of being true, so that you can villify the concept of atheism instead of intellectually dealing with it's claims.

      March 17, 2011 at 10:37 am |
    • The Bobinator

      My previous post isn't articulated well.

      > From prison statistics we see more religious people in jail per person then atheists.

      What I mean is that per person, there is a greater chance that person is a criminal if they are Christian rather then atheist.

      Or to phrase it another way, the ratio of criminals to non-criminals for atheists is lower then the ratio for Christians and indeed for religion as a whole.

      March 17, 2011 at 10:41 am |
    • Nonimus

      "Atheists abuse as much or more than Christians. I would contend more."
      I would like to see the citation on this one. Please show the study done that you base this statement on.

      March 17, 2011 at 11:15 am |
    • gerald


      There are lower percentages of atheists in the country than Christians. You use this to your advantage in distorting the facts.

      March 17, 2011 at 1:38 pm |
    • Magic


      You obviously don't understand the concept of ratio and proportion.

      Simple breakdown:

      – In a roomful of 100 random Christians 15 will be criminals.

      – In a roomful of 100 random atheists 1 will be a criminal.

      (Those (15 to 1) are not hard, verified statistics - I am just using them for demonstration purposes, but the numbers of criminals who are religious far outstrips the non-religious)

      March 17, 2011 at 2:00 pm |
    • geraldh

      Magic, your 100:15 100:1 are BS Statistics. There is absolutely no reason to beleive that a smaller percentage of atheists are criminals than Christians. There is reason to believe that a smaller number of atheists are criminals because only a small percentage of the population is atheist.

      March 17, 2011 at 3:19 pm |

    Let it be known throughout the generations and the ultraorthadox that there is not many nor not one greater than ME.

    March 17, 2011 at 4:41 am |
    • Egad

      Overblown ego much?

      March 17, 2011 at 5:19 am |
    • mollyd

      YOu are missing the point......

      March 17, 2011 at 3:13 pm |

    GOD sustains on the basis of Jacob I love,essau I hate. Anyone who sins to self sustain is cursed and anyone who causes a child of GOD to sin is worst off than if he was to die in agony. Only time,weather you believe or not. You mere man.

    March 17, 2011 at 4:35 am |
  18. ron

    God only knows some of the horrible things they have heard at confession and were allowed to keep it hidden.
    There are mostly good people in the Catholic church but there are many sick people also. Can you imagine all
    of the lives these evil people have ruined. It's unimaginable I think.

    March 17, 2011 at 3:56 am |
    • gerald

      Can you imagine that confession can actually make people better? I can tell you that many more lives would have been ruined had it not been for the hundreds of millions of confessions heard every year and the advice recieved and the grace given by God to overcome our weaknesses. Ron do you have any weaknesses? I bet you do. Are you a sinner? The scriptures say you are a liar if you say you are not. In the words of Ignatius of Loyola "except by the grace of God there go I" when he saw a group of men walking by in chains. By the way, you sound protestant. Well there are plenty of protestant molesters as welll. Just go to reformation dot com or check out baptist pedophiles. Search on the name phil jenkins. It's not just a Catholic problem.

      March 17, 2011 at 9:54 am |
    • chief

      while there are peds in all groups, the catholic church has a corner on the market by systematically ignoring the cries of children for hundreds of years.... its a "common" in the priesthood, common being that there have been over 10,000 charged and convicted in the US, the church has paid out over 3 BILLION in out of court settlements... and its people like you ignoring the facts that propogate the problem by diverting the truth.... yes there are many in all groups but at buship accountability dot org you can see their names and their offenses ... perhaps you are there too.... or not yet

      March 17, 2011 at 10:22 am |
    • gerald

      Simple minded chiefy here too. Yes, do the easy thing chief. Accuse me. You need no proof. He's catholic, he must be a ped. after all, since it has been found out in the CC ALL catholics are fair game. Your little better than a nazi with the Jews during wwII chief. Broad brushing hatred is what your about. Bigotry. Your a small man chief. No, 10,000 have not been convicted chief. And you might want to check on the work of Phil Jenkins, a protestant before you get so high and mighty about it being a bigger Catholic problem. You should also know that there are 70 insurance claims a week by protestant churches regarding child abuse. Now why would there be so many claims if there was not alot of this going on there. Sad fact is we don't hear about it nearly that much. No Chief, you don't have all the facts.

      March 17, 2011 at 10:43 am |
    • chief

      gerald... i never said all catholic.... my point was its a problems and we know where to look.... i dont hate the catholic church.... i hate the people in it that turn their heads to a blatent problem.... these kids... and in my simple minds.... if your not doing what you can to stop a problem ... your part of it....

      March 17, 2011 at 10:58 am |
    • Nonimus

      "Your little better than a nazi with the Jews during wwII chief. Broad brushing hatred is what your about. Bigotry."

      You have given up any remaining credibility when you compare someone who is condemning an organization which very well may yet be charged with criminal offenses, e.g. negligence, conspiracy, endangerment, etc., to an organization, the nazis, that killed millions of people because of their heredity and/or religion.
      I'm surprised you do not see the offensive nature of you comparison, even if you don't see it's illogical reasoning.

      March 17, 2011 at 11:41 am |
    • gerald


      March 17, 2011 at 1:16 pm |
    • gerald


      Do you think chief was okay accusing me of being a child molester? Do you read the posts that say close the CC down? Do you know what happens when countries try to close religions down. Russia? China? Hmmmmm. Do you know any priests and have you talked to them about they way they are treated when they are out in public? That's okay to you I guess.

      March 17, 2011 at 1:21 pm |
    • chief

      hey gerald... i never said close the cc, perhaps other did... they way you defend those that hurts kids makes you suspect to me.... if people like you spent as much time cleaning up your issue with kids being abused ( not only from now on but put all those guilty in the past behind bars ) ... then people like me would not give 1/2 a damn what you do or how many pagan rituals you follow or how many idols you worship.... i really wouldnt but letting kids being in harms way and defending it is an abomination.....

      March 17, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
    • gerald

      Chief the way you falsely accuse me is sick. I have NOT ONCE defended a child molester or one who harbors them. Why don't you take a reading comprehension class.

      March 17, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
    • gerald

      Chief, what do you do to protect kids and prevent abuse? List all the many activities your involved in besides making broad brushing accusations on message boards that no one who is going to do anything reads. I have actually been involved in parish activities to prevent abuse. Waiting to see your list chief. Otherwise you don't really care about child abuse.

      March 17, 2011 at 2:58 pm |
    • Eric G.

      @gerald: You defend the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church has protected child molesters.

      As far as what I do to protect children?

      I keep them away from the Catholic Church.

      March 17, 2011 at 3:03 pm |
    • geraldh

      God bless you Eric.

      March 17, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
    • chief

      hey gerald.... im good with what i do to help kids and certainly dont care what you think about what i do for kids, but i can say, i hate peds and think that they should be in jail as well as those who know anything about the crimes...... you should worry about yourself, your the one who worships an organization that protects them.... i dont make broad accustations.... 5% of catholic priests are peds...... GET RID OF THEM..... duh... the ped priests arent a percentage,... they are individuals committing crimes against kids..... and people like you that are part of their organization care more about the organization than the kids it hurts....

      March 17, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
    • Nonimus

      I don't agree with Chief's implication that you may be a molester, it was uncalled for. However, it is not beyond reason to think that someone on these blogs, vocifirously defending preists, might possibly be a preist themselves or a child molester or both. But claiming someone is "little better than a nazi with the Jews" is implying that they may have killed multiple people inline with a pyshcotic dictator's delusional ideology of racial supremacy. That is an unjustified, hyperbolic accusation and belittles the tradgity and suffering of the victims of the holocaust.
      In addition, who cares what he did to you! Does that make what you did right or wrong? No.

      Russia and China were/are communist countries. Their atrocities were done in the name of Communism. And some of the least religious countries in the world are the most peaceful such as, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, etc.

      No, I don't personally know any priests or how they are treated, but regardless of their treatment, their personal virtuousity does not in any way justify the defense of the organization to which they belong. Even if every member is an "angel", if the organization is criminal then it deserves to be prosecuted.

      March 17, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
    • chief

      i did imply that gerald may be one of them.... them being a priest or someone sympathetic to them.... even if i can out and said he was a ped, its much lesser of a crime than to side with the peds which he blatently does? most likely he is a priest.... gerlad just make broad sweeping statements that fail to confuse or amuse me....

      March 17, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
    • gerald

      I don't worship any organization knucklehead.

      March 17, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
    • gerald

      I don't side with any peds you bigot. They belong in jail. I side with the 95+ % of priests who have not committed these crimes but who people like you broad brush and cast aspersions on. Accusing someone of being a ped when you have no evidence is extremely sic. To accuse someone of such a sic crime is just plain stupid. It shows that you have no real morals either. Not many more than a ped.

      March 17, 2011 at 5:01 pm |
    • chief

      re gerald... go ahead and side with the priests,.... i am on the side of kids... you should try reading peoples posts... i direct my comments toward ped priests and those that harbor them.... if that is upsetting then.... i guess if the shoe fits, then...........

      March 18, 2011 at 8:22 am |
    • gerald

      Where have I gotten upset chief? More bearing false witness. Otherwise known as lying.

      March 18, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
  19. ron

    Just to show the power of the Catholic church, look at all the decades and probably countless thousands of people that were
    abused and they never were held accountable to any degree worth mentioning. It has been a disgrace for so long.
    Maybe it's not too late yet.

    March 17, 2011 at 3:49 am |
    • gerald


      Abuse has been a part of all society. In fact there is less of it among Catholic clergy than other similar groups. And yes other similar groups have gotten away with it as well. 38 million are estimated to have been abused as children. You make it out to be a CC problem. It's much bigger and there is hardly 7% of the population in jail for having abused. Its so easy to look at another group and broad brush and feel big about your prejudices against them. My guess is you belong to some group or class of people that has a higher percentage of child molesters than the priesthood? Maybe your a father. Fathers abuse their children more than priests in society today. I condemn it but let's watch our prejudices.

      March 17, 2011 at 9:48 am |
    • Eric G.

      @Gerald: The Catholic Church protected pedophiles. That is the difference. For you to continue to defend the Catholic Church for protecting pedophiles is disgusting. You should be ashamed.

      March 17, 2011 at 9:54 am |
    • gerald

      There were some who protected them but WHO? Names please? Not Benedict, there is no proof in the two cases that CNN tried to present as a smoking gun against him. A letter out of the millions of letters that go to the CDF? A priest that was in his diocese that got transferred? All priests get transferred. No I think the broad brushing and inuendo against all priests is disgusting as much as these acts. All priests I know have talked about harrassment as they travel if they wear the standard attire. Most of them are very good men who have had nothing to do with this. Be disgusted if you like. I will condemn the actions of SOME priests and SOME bishops but why should I not defend those who are innocent in this. But the bigots and prejudiced have to broad brush because it is the easy thing to do. Takes very little mind engagement to say "they're just a bunch of child molesters".

      March 17, 2011 at 10:17 am |
    • False Reality

      "Abuse has been a part of all society. In fact there is less of it among Catholic clergy than other similar groups. And yes other similar groups have gotten away with it as well. 38 million are estimated to have been abused as children. You make it out to be a CC problem. It's much bigger and there is hardly 7% of the population in jail for having abused. Its so easy to look at another group and broad brush and feel big about your prejudices against them. My guess is you belong to some group or class of people that has a higher percentage of child molesters than the priesthood? Maybe your a father. Fathers abuse their children more than priests in society today. I condemn it but let's watch our prejudices."

      It does however completely defeat the Morality Arguement.

      March 17, 2011 at 1:37 pm |
    • gerald

      What morality arguement? That Christians aren't sinners? That priests aren't sinners? Who would be making that arguement? The church is a hospital for sinners more than a hotel for saints.

      March 17, 2011 at 9:25 pm |
    • Evolved DNA

      Gerald..."The church is a hospital for sinners more than a hotel for saints." well if the correct medication had been administered by the pope this disease wouldn't have spread.

      March 18, 2011 at 3:45 pm |
  20. Cream of Human Kindness


    March 17, 2011 at 2:24 am |
    • gerald

      Cream+broad brushing + lack of reality = prejudice.

      March 17, 2011 at 9:43 am |
    • samiam

      The Catholic Church joined the illuminati, many many years ago. Nothing works out once you make an alliance with them, all the popes thought they would always be world teacher but the rituals the global elites want them to do is also getting their priests put in prison.

      March 17, 2011 at 10:49 am |
    • doctore0

      The catholic church = crime against humanity. They have been terrorizing the whole world with their made-up magic man, Je$u$.

      P.S. All gods are made up

      March 17, 2011 at 11:05 am |
    • killuminati

      Have you seen that illuminatic subliminal message in the preview for Hop (Easter bunny movie). Where the cartoon character says "getting rid of the sun will be difficult but not impossible". Take out sun and replace son.

      March 17, 2011 at 12:17 pm |
    • False Reality

      Have you seen that illuminatic subliminal message in the preview for Hop (Easter bunny movie). Where the cartoon character says "getting rid of the sun will be difficult but not impossible". Take out sun and replace son.

      And take out East Bunny and replace with Satan, and replace movie with "real life"..and "cartoon character" with "real person".. This is just pure nonsense.

      March 17, 2011 at 1:35 pm |
    • mollyd

      So true. Who can keep their faith after this? Once again, it is shown to the world that the Catholic Church, from the Pope on down, is run by a bunch of rapists and child molesters. Yuck. I walked away years ago. They are disgusting.

      March 17, 2011 at 3:05 pm |
    • Alex

      Why is everyone painting the cathlioc church with one brush. Is every Morman a poyligamist? Every Muslim a terrorist? Every African American Baptist? Every Jew rich? No. No. No. And no again. So is every priest a child molester? Every one that has a negitive opinion of the church's handling of this matter has forgot that victims of crimesin order for them to get justice has to come forward and tell police. Someone gets murdered no one tells police no one gets put in jail. Another thing is that LAW protects people that confess crimes to preists. If someone comes in and says "I have killed" well its just like if you were to tell a dr or a lawyer. Stop trying to hold people, yes preists are people, to a higher moral standard than yourself. they are people and people sin you and everyone sin all day all night. people are flawed and you need to accept that. And learn about a religion before you pass judgement about them. Hitler passed judgement before he learned about jews now look what happened. SHAME ON ALL OF YOU AND SHAME ON ME FOR BEING SINNERS!

      March 17, 2011 at 10:11 pm |
    • chief

      re alex.... bravo bravo.... and the razzy for the worst acting job goes to alex for his portayal of an apologist of priest.... hey sparkey.... these priest have a "higher calling" by God? a mediator for the people to God in prayer and confession? so dont give me that crap about them being people too.... actually the whole priest thing is stupid and being celibate on top of that.... maybe the first pope's mother in law could speak about it....

      March 18, 2011 at 1:42 pm |
    • gerald

      So I guess you think it was stupid of Jesus to be celibate to and to encourage in in Matt 19. Paul was kinda dumb for encouraging it in 1 Cor 7 as well. Celibacy isn't a doctrine chief, it's a practice. There are lots of married priests in the CC. Many anglicans who are married have come in and are priests. Eastern rite churches in FULL communion with Rome are married. So the thing about Peter does not in any way conflict with Catholic teaching or practice. Though it is interesting that his wife is never mentioned and he lives with his brother andrew. Likely his wife had died.

      March 18, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.