Four Irish Catholic bishops have resigned within the first 30 days after a government-ordered investigation announced that over decades the Dublin archdiocese had shielded from the law more than 170 Catholic priests accused of sexual child abuse.
Two Dublin bishops—Eamonn Walsh and Ray Field—resigned on December 25 as they apologized to abuse victims during Christmas mass.
A former religion professor at Elizabethtown College in Pennsylvania was sentenced June 1 for soliciting sex with what he believed were preteen girls. Saying the crime “cries out for incarceration,” Judge Scott A. Evans sentenced David B. Eller, 61, to two and a half to 10 years in state prison followed by five years of probation.
Former Boston priest Paul Shanley has been sentenced to 12 to 15 years behind bars for raping a minor in a Catholic church. Shanley’s was one of the more high-profile cases of offenders in the abuse and cover-up scandal in 2002.
Though some Catholic leaders blame homosexual priests for much of their church’s sexual-abuse problems, the predominantly gay Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches has had no sexual-abuse liability claims filed against the denomination in the past 25 years. Yet the California-based church body has not been free of offenders.