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In Philadelphia, New Cases Loom in Priest Scandal
Key Excerpts from Article on Website of New York Times

New York Times, March 4, 2011
Posted: March 16th, 2011

Three weeks after a scathing grand jury report said the Archdiocese of Philadelphia had provided safe haven to as many as 37 priests who were credibly accused of sexual abuse or inappropriate behavior toward minors, most of those priests remain active in the ministry. The possibility that even one predatory priest, not to mention three dozen, might still be serving in parishes on duty in the archdiocese today, with open access to new young prey, as the grand jury put it has unnerved many Roman Catholics here and sent the church reeling in the latest and one of the most damning episodes in the American church. The situation in Philadelphia is Boston reborn. The Boston Archdiocese was engulfed in a scandal starting in 2002 involving widespread sexual abuse by priests and an extensive cover-up that reached as high as the cardinal. The church has not explained directly why these priests ... are still active. Cardinal Justin Rigali initially said there were no active priests with substantiated allegations against them, but six days later, he placed three of the priests ... on administrative leave. Philadelphia is unusual in that the archdiocese has been the subject of not one but two grand jury reports. The first, in 2005, found credible accusations of abuse by 63 priests, whose activities had been covered up by the church. But there were no indictments, mainly because the statute of limitations had expired. The thing that is significant about Philadelphia is the assumption that the authorities had made changes and the system had been fixed, said Terence McKiernan, the president of, which archives documents from the abuse scandal in dioceses across the country. But the headline is that in Philadelphia, the system is still broke.

Note: For powerful evidence that this kind of abuse is much more widespread than believed, and goes beyond the Catholic Church, click here.

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