Sunday, January 31, 2010

New Owensboro Bishop Assisted in Protecting Homosexual Predators

When Pope Benedict XVI appointed the Rev. William Medley as bishop of Owensboro in December, many touted the leadership experience Medley gained in 27 years as a priest and administrator in the Archdiocese of Louisville. "I have always accepted any assignment that the church has asked of me," Medley said at the time.But one of those assignments is coming under scrutiny from advocates for victims of sexual abuse, as Medley prepares for his formal installation Feb. 10 as spiritual leader of 50,000 Western Kentucky Catholics.From 1989 to 1993, Medley served as the Louisville archdiocese's director of clergy personnel, where he helped handle re-assignments for five priests facing accusations, some substantiated, of sexually abusing minors, according to court documents.Related• Summary of cases Among those priests were Daniel C. Clark and Louis E. Miller, who ultimately were sent to prison for sexually abusing children. The archdiocese removed all five from ministry a decade later after concluding that accusations against them were valid.Cal Pfeiffer, a Louisville member of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, said he believes the people in Owensboro "have the right to be aware" of Medley's involvement in those cases."These things raise some real questions, and if these things are never brought out, it would show there's no consequence for him" for how he handled his job, Pfeiffer said.Medley said in an interview that he is reluctant to talk publicly about cases that could dredge up new pain for all involved, and he doesn't remember details about the cases."I prefer to look forward," Medley said, adding that while the church cannot "undo the hurt and damage" to children, it is now working to prevent future abuse.He pledged to handle any future revelations of abuse seriously."I think what I need to say to the people in Owensboro, and certainly any victims that would come forward, would be that I fully support the charter," Medley said, referring to the 2002 bishops' charter governing the handling of abuse allegations.

Human beings being what they are, we all know that someone will fail again, but I hope it will not be because the institution protected that or hid that."
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

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