The Nun’s Priest’s Tale

The Catholic diocese of Burlington is litigating a long series of sex abuse cases, in which it is accused of covering up pedophilia by its clergy. I think it’s lost or settled every case so far, but that hasn’t stopped diocesan attorneys from doing all they can to humiliate the victims of abuse on the stand. It’s a nice lesson for the kiddies.

As the current case goes to the jury, today’s Burlington Free Press has a story about our current bishop, Salvatore Matano, who in 1980, was director of personnel for the diocese of Providence in Rhode Island and oversaw the transfer of a priest who’d molested children.

Bishop Matano defended himself by saying he didn’t know why the diocese ordered the priest’s transfer. The Free Press reports that then-Father Matano received a hand-written note from Bishop Kenneth Angell saying, “Sal, for confidential reasons, Father Roland M. Lepire now at St. Aloysius in Woonsocket must be transferred at once. He should not be reassigned in the Woonsocket area.”

Fr. Matano may indeed not have been told the reason for the transfer, but it doesn’t take much to read between those lines. Further, when Fr. Matano suggested Fr. Lepire be assigned to a retreat house (conveniently away from children), the transfer was vetoed by a nun working at the facility, saying she did not want Fr. Lepire on the premises.

So, we asked to believe that the nun figured out what was up, but the director of diocesan personnel remained blissfully ignorant. Keep you mouth shut, stay loyal to your superiors and too bad about what happens to the kids. That, sadly, is how one gets to be a bishop in today’s American Catholic church.

One Comment

  1. James Sullivan-O'C.
    Posted 12/9/2007 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

    Clearly you are just expressing a personal hate by looking to distroy people within the church, even if they were totally inocent. What Fr. Matano did 27 years ago, when he clearly did not have all the facts, does not have anything to do with his quality as Bishop today. Keep you anti-catholic hate speach to yourself.

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