The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York decided to hire a former federal judge to review its policies, protocols, and procedures regarding child sexual abuse allegations against priest.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the Archbishop of New York announced the action after the Catholic church went through what he described as “the summer of hell” due to child sexual abuse scandals.
Last month, Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro released a grand jury report on the widespread child sexual abuse by predator priests. Over 1,000 children were sexually abused by 301 priests in six Catholic dioceses in Pennsylvania over the past decades, according to the report.
The report prompted New York Attorney General to open an investigation into Catholic dioceses in the state over allegations of clergy sexual abuse of minors. Other state attorneys general are also conducting an investigation into the matter.
On Thursday, Dolan said former federal judge and prosecutor Barbara S. Jones agreed to serve as “Special Counsel and Independent Reviewer.” She will be responsible for reviewing, evaluating, and recommending improvements to the Archdiocese of New York’s response to allegations of clergy sexual abuse.
New York Catholics demanded “accountability, transparency and action
During a press conference, Dolan said, “Many of our people and priests are calling it the “Summer of hell” for our Catholic family: we had the scandal of Theodore McCarrick; then came the nauseating detail of the Pennsylvania Grand Jury of horrific abuse of minors by priests in the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s; then the controversy around the Archbishop Vigano letter.”