May 27, 2005

The “Sins” of the Father

Orange County Weekly


Pope John Paul II knew. Many shocking stories of priestly sex abuse and their subsequent cover-ups are emerging from the once-secret Diocese of Orange priest personnel files. On May 17, a Los Angeles Superior Court judge ordered their release as part of the record-breaking $100 million settlement reached between the Orange diocese and victims of its pedophilic employees.

But from the more than 10,000 pages of documents, by far the most damning account is found in merely four pages: Pope John Paul II knew.

The disturbing revelation is included in the papers of Father Andrew Christian Andersen, who pleaded guilty in 1986 to 26 counts of molesting four boys while working at St. Bonaventure in Huntington Beach. One item is an August 10, 1987, note by Monsignor Oscar Rizzato, then the Secretariat of State for the Vatican, to the Orange diocese. The Secretariat of State, as the Vatican’s website describes it, is the arm of the Holy See’s bureaucracy “which works most closely with the Supreme Pontiff in the exercise of his universal mission.”

Posted by kshaw at May 27, 2005 06:50 AM