Tuesday, December 17, 2002

What's going on the Indy Archdiocese with their accused priests.

• Rev. John B. Schoettelkotte of Bristow was placed on administrative leave after the archdiocese substantiated an allegation that he abused a woman 30 years ago.

• Rev. Jack Okon of Indianapolis was placed on leave after being accused of fondling two teenage boys in the 1970s.

• Rev. Micheal H. Kelley resigned from a southern Indiana parish, admitting past sexual misconduct with adults.

• The late Rev. Albert Deery was accused in a lawsuit of sexually abusing schoolgirls.

Because, you know, this is all because of homosexuals in the priesthood. Anyway.

The board has investigated some of those priests, said DeLaney, but not all of them. And it isn't reviewing allegations against priests who have died, she said.

Jay Carrigan, vice president of Voice of the Faithful-Indiana, said knowing where the lay board is in the process is a step forward. His group is a lay Catholic organization that supports victims of priest abuse and priests who are not abusers.

The group has been pushing the archdiocese to tell the public how many priests are under investigation, how many victims have come forward and how much money the church has spent to settle cases against priests.

It also wants the archbishop to appoint a victim of priest abuse to the board.

Twice the group has made these requests by letter, the latest sent on Friday.

Borcherts said the second letter had not arrived.

In response to the first letter, Buechlein didn't give the group the information requested. He also dismissed the idea of appointing a victim of priest abuse to the board, referring to counsel he had received from DeLaney, a former Marion County deputy prosecuting attorney.

Putting a victim of abuse on the board wouldn't be fair to priests, DeLaney said."It is unrealistic to think that any person traumatized can make judgments without having that trauma impact those judgments," she said.

I think I'm just about bowled over here. I guess if the bishops can put a victim of abuse on their board, maybe the Archbishop of Indianapolis could, too. And I guess priests are always and everywhere to be trusted to be totally objective about the failings of their brother priests?

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