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In Milwaukee Post, Cardinal Authorized Paying Abusers


Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York authorized payments of as much as $20,000 to sexually abusive priests as an incentive for them to agree to dismissal from the priesthood when he was the archbishop of Milwaukee.

Questioned at the time about the news that one particularly notorious pedophile cleric had been given a “payoff” to leave the priesthood, Cardinal Dolan, then the archbishop, responded that such an inference was “false, preposterous and unjust.”

But a document unearthed during bankruptcy proceedings for the Archdiocese of Milwaukee and made public by victims’ advocates reveals that the archdiocese did make such payments to multiple accused priests to encourage them to seek dismissal, thereby allowing the church to remove them from the payroll.

A spokesman for the archdiocese confirmed on Wednesday that payments of as much as $20,000 were made to “a handful” of accused priests “as a motivation” not to contest being defrocked. The process, known as “laicization,” is a formal church juridical procedure that requires Vatican approval, and can take far longer if the priest objects.

“It was a way to provide an incentive to go the voluntary route and make it happen quickly, and ultimately cost less,” said Jerry Topczewski, the spokesman for the archdiocese. “Their cooperation made the process a lot more expeditious.” [more]


New York Times



  1. Tom Owens says:

    People. this whole affair is sim ply disgusting…and this idiot was just manufactured into a Cardinal….We are gone to hell in a basket….it is strange, with all I and others have read, and seen, it is this one situation that finally has me leaving the church. Just a few weeks ago this self centered egotistical power seeker was seen in a dress, shining with the Cardinal hat…. I’m out of here!!!!

    • Chuck Hunt says:

      Tom, I can see your legitimate discontent with this whole matter and you couldn’t be more right when you say that Dolan is nothing more than an EGOTISTICAL power seeker. I really hope the Church from Rome would do something about this matter. It is very serious and something needs to be done and quickly. I just can’t believe that a couple of days ago this Dolan was talking on the press and telling the people he never pursued the red hat and that all he wanted was to pursue sainthood and yet today this serious thing hits the fan? Boy, something’s really wrong and twisted nowadays with these hierarchs of the Church. But Tom, PLEASE DO NOT LEAVE US. We are better than these liars-twisted and egotistic leaders. Now more than ever WE (THE PEOPLE OF GOD) NEED TO STAND TOGETHER. Please don’t go!!!!

  2. Mary says:

    These are not payments and it is not a cover-up. If a priest is laicized he has no money to re-enter the world. When your employer lets you go you receive severance. I would not put any credence at all in anything SNAP has to say.

    • Tony says:

      When an employer terminates an employee for malfesence the employee is let go period, no severance no nothing, the is common practice and understood by all. It does look like Dolan awarded the priests with money that wasn’t his, but the people who contributed it to the church.

  3. Steve says:

    The sound you hear is my stomach turning. This is as sickening as anything that has emerged yet in the sexual abuse scandal. Even the slightest hint of moral decency would demand Dolan resign in this wake. And anyone who suggests this is not a big deal needs to have their moral compass adjusted.

  4. Mrs. Beatrice Gill says:

    “The Milwaukee Archdiocese filed for bankruptcy in January 2011, in the face of potential lawsuits by 23 accusers.”

    Avoiding taking responsibility — that’s sounds really Christian!

  5. Had It Catholic says:

    “When a man becomes a priest, the church is expected to care for his needs for a lifetime.”

    Even if he is a criminal who got himself ordained through lies and deceit?

    What would Jesus say about that?

  6. Recovering Catholic says:

    When private companies fire people for criminal acts, I don’t believe the criminals are offered package deals!

    Is Dolan saying that he was isolated at the top and didn’t know that those under him were paying off these pedophile creeps to leave the priesthood? The guy at the top must take full responsibility.

  7. Jose[ph Francis says:

    Arch-Bishop had the best of intentions. He has to work with within the Legal system of the Vatican. many laywers settle cases outside the court with money payments as incentives to act.

  8. Tony says:

    How could Dolan say that the accusation of the priest being paid off was false proposterous and unjust and then have a document surface proving that such payments were made?
    Talk about trying to cover things up.

    • David Tilly says:

      As long as we believe everything our Church “leaders” tell us, and we refuse to question or acknowledge that they are not really working in the best interest of the church (us) they will continue to get away with whatever they so desire. The Church has always “covered up” things – do you expect them to be honest and/or admit they did something wrong?


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