Tuesday, August 11, 2009

What did Bishop Lori Know and When Did He Know It?

Lawsuit, deposition allege diocese played hardball with whistleblower priest, accountant

A few years ago Fr. Michael Madden and the parish bookkeeper hired a private eye to investigate the behavior of the pastor who was using parish money to fund his lavish homosexual lifestyle with his boyfriend who had the run of the rectory and the parish office. In the course of the scandal it was clear that the associate had tried to get the chancery to do something for FOUR YEARS! Here's what I ran in the Les Femmes newsletter at the time:

***More New England madness: Fr. Michael Jude Fay pastored one of Darien Connecticut’s wealthy parishes, St. John’s. During his tenure he stole church funds to finance a lifestyle that included: a New York Apartment, a condo in Florida, fancy clothes, expensive jewelry, fine furniture, dining at expensive restaurants, tickets to Broadway shows, etc. He also lavished gifts on friends and family especially his gay partner, Cliff Fantini (aka Cliff Martell), a wedding consultant. In 2005 they took a cruise together, requesting that a queen bed replace the twins in their cabin. Fr. Fay was so bold he frequently entertained Fantini at the parish rectory. [Did he require a background check?] The scandalous situation at St. John’s only came to light when Church bookkeeper, Beth D'Erario, and associate pastor, Fr. Michael Madden, hired an investigator and took the results to the cops. Bishop William Lori made Madden parish administrator until the young priest made some imprudent statements in a homily about his four years of “living hell” and the foot-dragging of the diocese. Subsequently he was removed and forced to apologize. What will happen to him in the future remains to be seen, but the scenario is typical: Homosexual priest engages in sodomite relationship and steals from parish to fund lifestyle. Associate pastor blows the whistle. Diocese only takes action after scandal becomes public. Retribution against the whistleblower follows. [We’ll be watching to see what happens to Fr. Madden whom we consider a hero in the matter.]

This is one of those cases where one has to make a judgment call about who's telling the truth. Frankly, my money is on Fr. Madden and the bookkeeper. I didn't trust Bishop Lori when he was in D.C. and the tactics the diocese is using are the same ones used by bishops during the sex abuse scandals. Attack the accusers and stonewall. In 2002 Bishop Lori assigned homosexual priest Fr. Jude Fay as the lone priest on the diocesan 11-member Sexual Misconduct Review Board. Of course, the claim is no one in the chancery had ANY inkling that the big spending homosexual embezzler was doing something wrong. Perish the thought!

Hogwash! The evidence from the sex abuse scandals makes it clear that the bishops knew exactly what they were doing when they covered up for the abusers. Bishop Lori appears to be playing the same game now.

My prophecy is that the diocese will continue to claim innocence and do everything they can to stonewall the depositions. In they end they will settle out of court with the settlement sealed. Hey, it's like the government bailout -- it's only the pewsitters' money.

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