The archbishop of Los Angeles stripped his predecessor of all church duties Thursday as he released files on more than 100 clerics, as required under a 2007 lawsuit deal over alleged sex abuse.
Archbishop Jose Gomez said retired Cardinal Roger Mahony will “no longer have any administrative or public duties,” while Mahony’s former top adviser on sex-abuse issues, Thomas Curry, has stepped down as a regional bishop.
“These files document abuses that happened decades ago. But that does not make them less serious,” he wrote, releasing the personnel files online after prolonged wrangling over whether the names should be blanked out.
“I find these files to be brutal and painful reading. The behavior described in these files is terribly sad and evil. There is no excuse, no explaining away what happened to these children.
“The priests involved had the duty to be their spiritual fathers and they failed,” Gomez added. “We need to acknowledge that terrible failure today.”
But the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), a victims group, dismissed Curry’s resignation as a “small, belated step in the right direction” and said “hand-slapping Mahony is a nearly meaningless gesture.”
“The lesson here for Catholic staff is clear: if you successfully conceal your wrongdoing, you can keep your job. If, however, you fail, there’s an extraordinarily slim chance you might experience some slight consequences,” SNAP director David Clohessy said in a statement.
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