March 07, 2005

Priest to speak on how church can prevent future sex scandals

NAPLES (FL)
Naples Daily News

By JANINE A. ZEITLIN, jazeitlin@naplesnews.com
March 7, 2005

Warding off sexual abuse in the Catholic Church will take breaking down the mystique of the power of priests and making celibacy a choice, says a priest who predicted the scandal 20 years ago.

Father Thomas Doyle, 60, a priest for nearly 35 years, was an expert witness in more 150 clergy abuse cases and consulted on at least 500, he said.

On Tuesday, local Catholics will host Doyle profiled in "Vows of Silence," a book chronicling the scandal in a 7 p.m. speech and question-and-answer session at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in North Naples.

The Southwest Florida chapter of Voice of the Faithful a group with 40,000 members nationwide formed by lay people in response to the unraveling scandals organized the visit for its third annual speaker's forum.

Mandatory celibacy was one factor fueling the crisis, says Doyle, because priests didn't fully fathom the scars abuse left on victims, an understanding that might deepen through parenthood.

Posted by kshaw at March 7, 2005 07:01 AM