It happened in Orange, too

It happened in Orange, too

It’s not exactly news; it’s a reminder. A document dump from the Diocese of Orange, California, shows a pattern of cover-up, shuffling perverts, and a code of silence.

For more than two decades, officials in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange covered up for priests who molested children, shuffling predators from parish to parish and diocese to diocese, protecting them from prosecution and failing to warn parishioners of the danger, according to church documents released Tuesday.

More than 10,000 pages of letters, handwritten notes, memos and other documents detailing church actions were released from the personnel files of 15 priests and teachers as part of a court-approved $100-million settlement reached in December between the Orange Diocese and 90 alleged molestation victims. A judge ruled, however, that he was “powerless” to order the release of files on eight other priests and teachers.

According to the newly released documents, church officials dumped one serial molester in Tijuana. They welcomed a convicted child abuser from another state into their diocese, even though they knew he faced a new allegation. When he was accused once again, they sent him to a New Mexico rehabilitation center with a notation: “No one else will take you.” And they offered a repeat abuser up to $19,000 to leave the priesthood quietly.

I have deja vu from 2002 here in Boston. It’s the same stuff from the same era and I’m left with the same questions. How could they do this? How could a bishop let these predators abuse these kids again and again and then let them escape? It’s incomprehensible.