Jul 19, 2007

His Eminence will take out loans to fund the settlement

Today's Los Angeles Times reports (click on this post's title) this:

"The Los Angeles Archdiocese plans to pay its share of a record clergy sexual abuse settlement by liquidating investments, taking out BANK LOANS and selling up to 50 non-parish properties, including its administrative headquarters, according to diocesan representatives." [emphasis added]

The Times also says that in late May, "Mahony traveled to Rome to consult with Vatican officials on financial aspects of the settlement and to receive required approvals for the loans and property sales under consideration..." Imagine the impression that made.

The Times also reported this:

"Cardinal Roger M. Mahony and others have said the archdiocese, which drained its litigation reserve fund in payouts for a partial clergy-abuse settlement in December, will try to avoid harming 'essential ministries' and does not plan to sell any parish or school properties.

"Still, the archdiocese, the most populous in the country, 'will have to be a much leaner operation than it is now,' [C]hurch attorney J. Michael Hennigan said. 'The liquidity it has comes from investments that produce income that supports diocesan operations.'"

But that's not all. It gets worse:

"The archdiocese has drawn up a list of 49 other properties that may be sold, some of them vacant land that had been reserved for future church expansions, including in fast-growing Santa Clarita, Hennigan said."

And still worse:

"Hennigan said, however, that specific choices are yet to come. 'I don't think any of the hard decisions have been made, but there will be no impact on essential ministries. The magic word in that sentence is "essential,"' he said."

Oh, and by the way:

"Both men [ Hennigan and Tod Tamberg] said the church's downtown landmark, the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, which cost $189.5 million to build, would not be included in any property sales. Tamberg pointed out that the cathedral is also a parish church and that the archdiocese has promised to protect parish assets in the settlement.

"In addition, Hennigan said the cathedral was built with funds raised specifically for that purpose and cannot be used to cover other costs."

Somewhat similar considerations did not stop the Archdiocese from selling Mrs. Doheny's Gutenberg Bible and other are volumes in 1987, did they?

Do you think stopping abortions will become "an essential ministry" in this Archdiocese in the future? It is not exactly that now, as we know and as millions of aborted babies could attest.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wondering why ALL the fury is directed at Mahony (though he deserves fury) and not at the lawyers who are doing to the Church what Henry VIII did - divesting it out of sheer greed (since they are pretty much done suing Big Tobacco). Any **children raped** should get a huge payment, but anyone who merely got patted on the rear by Father Weirdo or who lied (since the priest was dead and besides, it was decades ago, so I too can win the lottery) should get nothing.

I know a half dozen people who were very mildly "molested" or made to feel somewhat "uncomfortable" at school trips, scout events, etc., and you don't see the wolves/lawyers doing this - because there are no deep pockets.

Is ANYONE saying this in LA? In the papers? Anywhere? I have read some lawyers crowing that they will destroy the church. But has no one asked wny the innocent should be made to pay - those people who would use those properties set aside for church expansion in the future?

The whole thing is nausetaing, from the evil priests to Mahony to the lawyers to the people who allow the church to be sued and not the public schools to those who hopped on the bandwagon claiming "molestation" to get their share.

Henry VIII indeed.

4:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with Anonymous 4:55 AM. Destroying the Church was and remains the goal. Here's a lead no one is following--some of these alleged victims are agents for virulently anti-Catholic "Christian" churches with which they have become affiliated. When I once tried to gain access to the SNAP online message boards, the web master sent me a CD of an anti-Catholic screed by the Rev. John MacArthur of Grace Community Church in the San Fernando Valley. Now why would someone in Kansas City be sending out anti-Catholic "preaching" from Southern California? There's a link there that I wish someone in the media would investigate.

12:38 PM  
Blogger Quintero said...

Dear Anonymous 4:55 a.m.,

Remember, the victims include not just pre-puberty children but teenagers (who were underage and needed protection by the law).

Remember too that a whole range of sexual assaults is illegal, not just rape.

In any outfit the head man is always going to end up taking the heat, especially when he has made major "errors" such as reassigning known and confessed offenders.

Some studies have revealed a phenomenal molestation rate by government school teachers, coaches and other employees.

Some studies have revealed molestations and a high adultery rate among Protestant ministers.

If you have any citations to articles that quote lawyers as saying they will destroy the Church, please post them here!

Hardly anyone has a good opinion of most trial lawyers or of the legal arrangements that govern civil lawsuits. In class-action lawsuits and group settlements, lawyers end up with lots of money.

I think the reason people do not comment about possible phony claims is that they do not want to cause grief and emotional hurt to the genuine victims.

1:23 PM  
Blogger Quintero said...

Dear Anonymous 12:38 p.m.,

Thank you for the blockbuster news about the anti-Catholic slime that that webmaster sent you.

You could contact someone in your local news media, or someone in the L.A. media, and tell them.

You ought to go to latimes.com and knx1070.com and the Los Angeles Daily News website and tell them what happened to you.

Thanls again for this important news.

1:28 PM  
Blogger Quintero said...

Dear Both Anonymouses,

One of the many sad aspects of the sex abuse and cover-up scandals is all the fodder they provide for the anti-Catholic propagandists.

If the news media and the rest of the professional anti-Catholic propagandists really were concerned about preventing all sex abuse, they would go after the government schools and the Protestant churches.

G.K. Chesterton said, "If there were no God, there would be no atheists." Same with our Church --if She were not the True Church, no one would be attacking Her.

But obviously, it is terrible when our sins give scandal -- give cause for so much criticism.

1:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Quintero, I apologize that I do have the citation for the lawyer who said his goal was to destroy the church. I swear to you as a believing, practicing Catholic, that I did indeed read this quote is more than one report (with the same lawyer). The lawyer was clearly a very angry man, and no, it does not apply to all lawyers. If I come across it in my files I will post it.

Yes, we want to protect the feelings of those truly hurt -- -but at what cost? At the cost of libel and slander against dead priests, and at the cost of divesting the Church of much of its property, which punishes parishioners hwo might not even have been BORN when these things happened? And at the cost of letting the media be the only voice - the media that says the Church is just unadulterated evil? The Yale Divinity School magazine recently published a letter saying the RCC had a "hegemony of pedophiles" because NO ONE speaks up!

It would be a false dilemma to argue that EITHER we must let the church be plundered OR we must let real victims be hurt. If they are really victims interested in the truth - as so manysay they are: "It's not about the money, just about getting the truth out" then how will the whole truth huir them? As our Lord say, "The truth willset you free," not hurt you.

7:19 AM  
Blogger Joseph D'Hippolito said...

I would love to know how any financial institution is going to guarantee loans to an entity that has just paid more than $700 million in two separate settlements. I would love to know what the archdiocese's credit rating is after this fiasco.

If this isn't a sign of Mahony's malfeasance -- and a sign that he isn't fit for his position (hint, hint, fellow Catholics) -- then nothing is.

Anti-Catholic propagandists will always be around to take advantage of situations, even if Mahony were a saint. They are irrelevant. They cannot destroy the Church. The Church can only destroy itself -- and, thanks to Mahony and others like him (such as the weak-need bureaucrats in Rome0, it's not doing a bad job of going along those lines.

Some of you who are so concerned about lawyers and anti-Catholic propagandists had better start being concerned about a holy, righteous God Whose name has been sullied by the exploits of those who hold power in that name. Do you think He will allow this Church that has become infatuated with politial influence, prestige and financial power to go unscourged? Indeed, the scourging is already beginning -- and has been going on for quite a while.

A billion John McArthurs cannot do what the God of the universe can do. Remember that, people.

10:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. D'hippolito,
Read your Church history...while the current scandal is bad enough, it pales in comparison to the corruption of the Renaissance Church in Italy with Popes fathering children and making their sons cardinals, among other things.

Nothing will destroy our Church--that is the promise of Christ. He is with us always and even the gates of hell shall not prevail against His One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.

12:53 PM  
Blogger Quintero said...

Dear Anonymous 7:19 a.m.,

I'm sure you read the quote. I wasn't doubting you at all, I just wanted to have the citation for future reference, to show what our Church is up against.

If you recall the lawyer's name, maybe you can do a search on the web, using his name and perhaps a word or phrase he might have used.

Yes, there are ways to discuss the scandals, the cover-ups and the possibility of false claimants without casting doubt on the veracity of the true victims.

I think reasonable people might agree that the scandal is so big and the cost so much that those who have presided over it might want to consider stepping aside.

That would mean quite a few U.S. bishops might want to consider submitting their resignations.

But in that case, the Vatican ought to reconsider the process it uses to appoint U.S. bishops, because the current and past process seems to have big flaws.

10:28 PM  
Blogger Quintero said...

Dear Joseph,

One thing we might all want to consider in making posts and comments is that if someone -- say, Ole Q here -- suggests we ought to do something, that does not mean he thinks that something is the only thing we should do.

If I say we ought to pray and work to help restore people's faith; if I say we should expose the anti-Catholics who use the scandals to attack the Church; and if I and others note that lawyers are making lots of money off the Church; that does NOT mean I am not also concerned about Almighty God and His rights and Name.

Not every post and comment can be all-comprehensive. We can't assume that if someone says A and not B, that automatically means he or she is not concerned about B.

10:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, Q...interesting observation here: Mr. D'hippolito says: "Some of you who are so concerned about lawyers and anti-Catholic propagandists had better start being concerned about a holy, righteous God Whose name has been sullied by the exploits of those who hold power in that name."

Notice that he is providing the exact meaning of "bearing the Lord's name in vain" that I pointed out was Dennis Prager's understanding of the Second Commandment (in that other thread)!

12:27 AM  
Blogger Joseph D'Hippolito said...

Hey, Q...interesting observation here: Mr. D'hippolito says: "Some of you who are so concerned about lawyers and anti-Catholic propagandists had better start being concerned about a holy, righteous God Whose name has been sullied by the exploits of those who hold power in that name."

Notice that he is providing the exact meaning of "bearing the Lord's name in vain" that I pointed out was Dennis Prager's understanding of the Second Commandment (in that other thread)!

Is this the same "anonymous" who says he "stands by the Church"?

Well, sir (or madam), do you seriously believe that the shenanigans of Mahony, his fellow enablers and the perverts they enabled doesn't drag God's name through the mud? How many people have lost their faith in God because of the evil of such men? Do you seriously believe that God does not care about the innocent, let alone His own reputation? Or haven't you read Scripture lately? If not, I suggest you start doing so, pronto.

With Catholics like you, who needs anti-Catholics, or atheists?

1:57 PM  

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