“Rather than being disciplined..these priests were moved around and the allegations against them not reported to police, “at the expense of I can’t imagine how many children,” who would have been spared otherwise.
“As heinous as the sexual abuse crimes were,” he said, “the cover-up is worse.”
Chicago bishop who didn’t report child abuse allegations to police is living on archdiocese property
By Marlena Baldacci and Dakin Andone, CNN
Sat September 8, 2018
(CNN)A bishop who admitted he never reported suspicions of child sexual abuse by priests is currently living in a historic mansion owned by the Archdiocese of Chicago.
In a 2007 deposition, Auxiliary Bishop Raymond Goedert told lawyers he never alerted law enforcement to allegations of sexual abuse by Catholic clergy before providing the lawyers with the names of 25 clergy members who he knew had been accused of such behavior.
Today, 90-year-old Goedert is living at the Archbishop’s Residence, an historic three-story building made of “smooth red brick” with 19 chimneys, three of which are in use, according to the archdiocese’s website, which calls it “perhaps the largest and best-preserved building of its type in the Chicago area.”
Paula Waters, spokeswoman for the Archdiocese of Chicago, said Goedert, who is retired, remains in “good standing because he never had a charge against him.”….
“He retired as a priest in good standing; he has been living at the house in good standing,” Waters said. “He’s not ministering to anyone now, and he followed procedures at the time for what they were supposed to do regarding priests facing child sex abuse allegations.” ….
While Goedert himself has not been accused of wrongdoing, an attorney who deposed him and who has represented alleged victims of priest abuse told CNN that the bishop’s actions — not reporting the allegations of abuse — point to a larger issue of how the Catholic Church handles child sexual abuse allegations.
The issue has been highlighted by the recent release of a Pennsylvania grand jury report detailing decades of sexual abuse by priests.
“He was just the one in Chicago that was following the playbook,” said the lawyer, Marc Pearlman, who has represented hundreds of sex abuse victims in the Chicago area….
Pearlman, one of the attorneys who deposed Goedert, told CNN his first impression of Goedert was that he was a “nice old man.”
“I say that not in defense of him, but that’s what makes this (scandal) so disturbing and alarming,” Pearlman told CNN on Friday.
“This is not about Bishop Goedert. There are hundreds, if not thousands, just like him in every archdiocese,” Pearlman continued. “He was just the one in Chicago that was following the playbook. It doesn’t matter if it’s Chicago, Joliet, Los Angeles, Boston. Everyone had a Father Goedert who did the same thing.”
Rather than being disciplined, Pearlman said, these priests were moved around and the allegations against them not reported to police, “at the expense of I can’t imagine how many children,” who would have been spared otherwise.