FALL RIVER — In January 2002, the Boston Globe began publishing a series of Spotlight articles that would lead to a firestorm of revelations of clergy abuse in the Archdiocese of Boston, throughout our U.S. Catholic Church, and ultimately our world.
The two decades that followed have been painful for all Catholics — lay, religious and clergy alike — as more allegations, investigations, lawsuits, and grand jury reports continue to unfold. Yet these revelations give us only a small understanding of the depth of pain and suffering endured by survivors. Just as Jesus drove out the moneychangers who defiled the temple, the Church is undergoing a necessary cleansing. Has any good emerged? Is there reason for hope? What has changed?
In the coming months The Anchor will publish a series of articles that seek to honor the experience of survivors and highlight the ongoing efforts in child protection, healing, and reform at work in the Diocese of Fall River and across our country.
One year ago, in January 2021, the Diocese of Fall River published a list of clergy who have ministered in the Diocese of Fall River who have been publicly and/or credibly accused of child sexual abuse. The list and accompanying information can be found on our website: https://www.fallriverdiocese.org/diocesan-response-to-the-sexual-abuse-crisis/
The publication of this list and others like it throughout the country has been called for by survivors of clergy abuse for years as a necessary step toward transparency. The Diocese of Fall River publication represents the culmination of years of work that began with an external audit of clergy files and led to an exhaustive evaluation of the audit results. The diocese remains committed to updating and maintaining the list if and when new information becomes available.
If you or someone you love has been abused by someone representing the Church (priest, deacon, religious, employee or volunteer) we are here to listen and support you. You can report an incident of abuse by contacting local law enforcement directly and by contacting the Victim Assistance Coordinator at the Office of Safe Environment: 508-985-6508.