Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Fargo bishop defends diocesan response to abuse

Fargo bishop defends diocesan response to abuse
December 22, 2009

Responding to news releases issued by the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, Bishop Samuel Aquila of Fargo defends his diocese’s response to abuse allegations in a December 22 op-ed piece.

“No form of child abuse or sexual misconduct of any kind is now nor ever was considered acceptable within the Church,” writes the North Dakota bishop. “When an individual reports wrongful conduct of any kind, regardless of the age of the reporter, it is and will continue to be our policy to work with civil authorities as required while, at the same time, respecting the privacy of those who come forward.”

“By honoring an individual’s desire for privacy, the diocese’s ability to respond publicly on these sensitive issues is necessarily limited. At times, our pledge of confidentiality to those with the courage to report is used against the diocese. Despite those injustices, I will not violate the trust of anyone who makes a report to us.”

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