Pennsylvania Clergy Abuse Lawyers | Blog | Williams Cedar


March 5, 2020
Harrisburg Diocese Declares Bankruptcy
The Pennsylvania Catholic diocese of Harrisburg is the latest American diocese forced to declare bankruptcy as it faces new financial pressures from the increase of clergy abuse cases. According to the bankruptcy filing, the diocese could be facing almost $100 million in debt. Harrisburg becomes the first Catholic diocese in Pennsylvania to seek bankruptcy...Read More >>
February 29, 2020
Pennsylvania Investigates Cover Up of Abuse by Jehovah’s Witnesses
As the number of clergy abuse cases involving Catholic priests continues to grow, members of other faith communities are coming forth to share their own stories of sexual misconduct by clergy members. A new investigation into abuse cover-ups by members of the Jehovah’s Witnesses sheds light on the sexual abuse problem across religious faiths....Read More >>
February 28, 2020
Resources Available to Clergy Abuse Survivors
As more individuals come forward with their stories of clergy abuse, the need of survivors for assistance in dealing with the physical and psychological aftermath of the abuse grows. Pennsylvania’s Grand Jury investigation uncovered over 1,000 survivors of clergy abuse in that state alone. Important resources available to clergy abuse survivors include group therapy...Read More >>
February 24, 2020
Full List of Accused Priests Released in New Jersey
Within the last year, an increasing number of New Jersey dioceses have released lists of Catholic priests “credibly accused” of sexual misconduct. The number of credibly accused priests is approaching 6,000 nationwide. ProPublica has compiled these lists into a searchable database. For the first time, individuals can view one source that combines names from...Read More >>
February 13, 2020
Clergy Abuse Lists Remain Inconsistent and Incomplete
Many Catholic dioceses have released lists of “credibly accused” clergy members who have been named in sexual abuse allegations. Church officials have stated that names of clergy members were added to the lists when evidence could substantiate an allegation of abuse. While survivor advocacy groups urged such transparency for years, many critics warn these...Read More >>
February 12, 2020
Catholic Church Unreliable for Abuse Survivors
Recent investigative reports confirmed what many survivors of clergy abuse have known for years about the Catholic Church’s unreliability in its handling of abuse allegations. According to an Associated Press (AP) investigation into the Church’s response to the ongoing clergy abuse crisis, independent review boards created by the Church to respond to abuse allegations...Read More >>
February 7, 2020
NFL Team Tries to Shield Emails in Clergy Abuse Crisis
One National Football League (NFL) team has come under intense scrutiny for its alleged role in helping the Catholic Archdiocese of New Orleans deal with the clergy sexual abuse crisis. Documents obtained from a lawsuit filed by more than 20 abuse survivors indicate the New Orleans Saints organization may have provided undisclosed public relations...Read More >>
February 6, 2020
New Charges Issued Against Newark Diocese
Claims of clergy abuse allegedly committed by a Newark priest over four decades ago have recently come to light resulting in new charges being filed against the Newark Diocese. According to two lawsuits recently filed in the Superior Court of Essex County, a deceased priest who worked in the Newark diocese engaged in sexual...Read More >>
February 6, 2020
24 Cherry Hill Priests on Credibly Accused Sexual Abuse List
ProPublica, an independent journalism site, has released a new comprehensive list of Catholic clergy members who have been accused of sexual abuse. 24 priests from Cherry Hill, New Jersey made the newest version of this list. These “credibly accused” priests have direct ties to the Cherry Hill area and are on the same list...Read More >>
February 3, 2020
Extension for Child Victim’s Act Window Supported by New York Lawmakers
The Child Victim’s Act took effect last August and has garnered more than 1,300 civil suits since the one-year look back window was introduced.  Lawmakers are now working to extend this window for another year. The extension would allow victims of sexual abuse enough time to come forward and talk about restitution of situations...Read More >>
February 2, 2020
States Use Clergy Abuse Lists to Screen Applicants
Removing a sexual predator from the priesthood may not guarantee the abusive priest will no longer have contact with underage children. Many defrocked priests that were removed from ministry due to sexual misconduct allegations continue to live in communities where they encounter children every day. Some of these individuals have obtained licenses for jobs...Read More >>
February 1, 2020
Survivors of Color Remain in the Shadows of Clergy Abuse
Sexual predators, including the perpetrators of clergy abuse, target all types of individuals. Male and female, young and old, and persons of all nationalities, colors, and ethnic groups have experienced the trauma occurring when a trusted clergy member engages in sexual misconduct. While many survivors are coming forward to share their experiences and shed...Read More >>
January 31, 2020
What is Clergy Sexual Abuse?
Recognizing when clergy sexual abuse first occurs may be challenging for some survivors since this type of abuse can take many forms. Understanding what actions fall within the definition of clergy sexual abuse is the first step in helping survivors heal from the trauma. Whenever a member of the clergy or other religious member...Read More >>
January 30, 2020
Catholic Church Shuts Down Priests After Claims of Sexual Abuse
Italian authorities are investigating reports of clergy abuse by two brothers towards members of the Catholic Church, including five priests, a brother and three religious order priests. The Vatican has shut down the nine priests and brothers of this Catholic group based on the ongoing investigation. The investigation was started after Prato Bishop Giovanni...Read More >>
January 27, 2020
Abuse Survivor Speaks Out and Sues Newark Archdiocese
An alleged abuse survivor spoke out against the clergy abuse he suffered from as a minor and filed a suit against the Newark Archdiocese. The man claims that when he attended Our Lady of the Lake Elementary School in Verona, New Jersey in the 1990s as a 14-year-old that a priest molested him. The...Read More >>
January 22, 2020
Catholic Church Limits Payouts to Survivors of Clergy Sexual Abuse
Advocacy groups for the survivors of clergy abuse are expressing new concerns over a growing trend among Catholic dioceses to file for bankruptcy to limit payouts to abused individuals. Since 2004, more than 20 dioceses filed for bankruptcy protection in the wake of clergy abuse lawsuits being filed against them. Using the bankruptcy process...Read More >>
January 21, 2020
Vatican Investigating Brooklyn Bishop on Clergy Abuse Allegations
The Vatican will be investigating a Brooklyn bishop regarding clergy abuse allegations filed against him. Initially, in October 2019, Pope Francis recruited the bishop to oversee the clergy abuse investigation of the Buffalo Diocese in Buffalo, New York, and how it was being handled. In November 2019, however, church leaders were notified that an...Read More >>
January 21, 2020
Social Media Often a Last Resort for Survivors of Clergy Abuse
Coming forward with an allegation of sexual abuse against a clergy member is rarely an easy decision for a survivor. Some survivors are hesitant to tell their stories for fear of judgment, shame, or ridicule. In other cases, Catholic officials, including high ranking bishops and archbishops, have actively discouraged survivors from coming forward with...Read More >>
January 20, 2020
Oratory Prep Places Chaplain on Indefinite Leave Pending Investigation
Oratory Prep in Summit, New Jersey placed their chaplain on indefinite leave pending an investigation. Law enforcement authorities and the Archdiocese of New York will conduct the investigation although they have not disclosed the nature of the allegations. In the past few days, the Oratory Prep received several complaints regarding the chaplain. The Archdiocese...Read More >>
January 15, 2020
Hundreds of Clergy Members Left Off Sex Abuse Lists
Catholic dioceses around the country continue to create and publish lists of priests credibly accused of sexual misconduct. Many fear hundreds of clergy members have been left off these lists intentionally. By failing to identify all perpetrators of clergy abuse, the Catholic Church has so far failed in its promise to provide more transparency...Read More >>
January 14, 2020
New Jersey Clergy Abuse Hotline Sees Spike in Calls Under Extended Statute of Limitations
Clergy abuse survivors previously barred from filing lawsuits against their abusers in New Jersey received additional time in which they can file their claims under recent changes in state law. According to New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal, many survivors are using this opportunity to come forward and seek justice for the abuse they...Read More >>
January 11, 2020
Vatican Struggles with Clergy Abuse Cases
As more survivors come forward to file sexual abuse complaints against Catholic clergy, the Vatican appears overwhelmed with the volume of cases it should investigate. Record numbers of abuse allegations have been filed from countries around the world. This includes the United States, Mexico, Poland, Chile, and Italy. The Vatican faces a serious backlog...Read More >>
January 10, 2020
Lifting Pontifical Secrecy in Clergy Abuse Cases Benefits Survivors
“Pontifical secrecy” has been used by the Roman Catholic hierarchy to exclude clergy abuse survivors from access to investigative files in clergy abuse cases. Under this rule of confidentiality, sensitive information related to Church governance was not to be shared with outside authorities. Church officials who requested investigative files would receive them from the...Read More >>
January 9, 2020
Connecticut Task Force Proposes to Eliminate Statue of Limitations
A Connecticut task force proposed to eliminate the statute of limitations in filing claims for child sex abuse. The legislative task force, led by Senator Mae Flexer who is a proponent of the legislation, recommended this. The current law in Connecticut states that child sex abuse survivors can only file lawsuits until they reach...Read More >>
January 9, 2020
Pennsylvania Judge Approves Clergy Abuse Reporting Suit
Recently, a Pennsylvania judge approved a lawsuit on Tuesday against the Pittsburgh Diocese and other state Catholic dioceses by the parents of clergy abuse victims and survivors to proceed in court. The claim against the dioceses alleges that the dioceses created public issues by not reporting and failing to disclose allegations of child abuse...Read More >>
January 7, 2020
Former Holy Cross Student Accuses Nun of Clergy Abuse
A former Holy Cross student accused a nun of clergy abuse in a recently filed lawsuit. The abuse survivor who is now 62 years old claims that when she was a student at the Holy Cross School in Rumson, New Jersey in the 1960s that a nun who presided as a teacher at the...Read More >>
January 3, 2020
New Jersey Dioceses Expand Time for Victims’ Compensation Fund
Roman Catholic dioceses in New Jersey announced that they will expand the amount of time in which to apply for the Victims’ Compensation fund. Co-Administrator Camille Biros made the announcement on Thursday, January 2 about the fund, which provides past clergy abuse victims and survivors with compensation for abuse they endured by a credibly...Read More >>
January 3, 2020
Psychological Effects of Clergy Abuse
Healing from childhood sexual abuse by a trusted clergy member can take a lifetime. New research on the long-term psychological effects of clergy abuse confirms the gravity of the consequences of experiencing this type of trauma as a child. Some of the most significant psychological effects experienced by survivors include higher incidences of anxiety...Read More >>
December 20, 2019
Secret World of Abusive Nuns
Although there has been significant media focus on the problem of clergy sexual abuse, the public may not be aware of a similarly devastating abuse committed by female members of religious orders. While investigations continue to target abusive priests, less attention has been given to the problem of abusive nuns. Currently there are almost...Read More >>
December 19, 2019
Camden and Trenton Dioceses Face Clergy Abuse Claims
Both the Camden and Trenton dioceses face multiple clergy abuse claims filed by six different men. The claims focus on several priests and two Catholic brothers within the dioceses, and, according to the accusers, took place in the 1970s and 1980s. A survivor filed a suit against a priest who served at the former...Read More >>
December 18, 2019
Pope Eliminates “Pontifical Secrecy” in Clergy Abuse Cases
On Tuesday, the Pope made the monumental decision to eliminate secrecy by the Catholic church in clergy abuse cases. “Pontifical secrecy” protected credibly accused abusive clergy members and left victims and abuse survivors silent. It also inhibited law enforcement officials from adequately investigating abuse allegations involving the Catholic church or any member of clergy....Read More >>
December 17, 2019
Abuse Survivor Files New Suit Against Ex-Priest from Staten Island
An abuse survivor filed a new clergy abuse suit against an ex-priest who served in Staten Island, New York. In addition to the ex-priest, the suit, which was filed last week, targets an allegedly abusive local baseball coach and the Archdiocese of New York. The survivor alleges that the former priest who served at...Read More >>
December 10, 2019
Clergy Abuse Claim Targets Former New York Giants Chaplain
On Monday, a man filed a clergy abuse claim that targets a former New York Giants chaplain and the Newark Archdiocese. The lawsuit alleges that the chaplain abused him back in 1967 when he served as the pastor at the Immaculate Conception Church in Montclair, New Jersey. In the 1990s, he held the position...Read More >>
December 9, 2019
South Jersey Man Files Abuse Suit Against Philadelphia Archdiocese
A South Jersey man filed a clergy abuse suit against the Philadelphia Archdiocese and accuses them of failing to protect children from a deceased priest who he claims sexually abused him. Apparently, the abuse occurred in the 1970s in Pennsylvania and during trips to the Jersey Shore while the man was 13 and 14...Read More >>
December 9, 2019
Philadelphia Archdiocese Deems Priest “Unsuitable for Ministry”
The Philadelphia Archdiocese deemed a priest who has been accused of clergy abuse “unsuitable for ministry.” On Sunday, the Philadelphia Archdiocese announced that the results of a lengthy investigation that started in January and was handled by the Archdiocesan Professional Responsibilities Review Board prompted them to classify the priest who allegedly abused a child...Read More >>
December 6, 2019
Catholic Boards Fail to Uphold Commitments
As the Catholic Church struggles to find ways to deal with the clergy abuse crisis, many dioceses have turned to mandatory review boards as part of the solution.  Recent studies show survivors continue to struggle to obtain justice for the trauma they experienced, despite the existence of these boards. Catholic dioceses are addressing the...Read More >>
December 5, 2019
Previously Accused Paterson Diocese Priest Faces New Allegations
A defrocked Paterson Diocese priest faces new clergy abuse allegations by new accusers. One survivor claimed that the former priest and two other clergy members who served at St. Joseph Church in Mendham, New Jersey subjected him to abuse when he was between 11 and 13 years old starting in 1974. Another man alleges...Read More >>
December 5, 2019
Talking to Children About Clergy Abuse
With the media spotlight continuing to expose the problem of clergy abuse in the Catholic Church, many parents are unsure about the proper way to talk to their children about this issue. Properly informing children about the existence of clergy abuse and what to do if it occurs can be an important part in...Read More >>
December 4, 2019
South Jersey Clergy Abuse Suits Filed in Camden and Cape May Counties
On Monday, two South Jersey clergy abuse suits were filed in Camden County and Cape May County. The first filing involves a man who was abused by a Catholic brother who taught at St. Peter’s Church in Pleasantville, New Jersey, which has since been absorbed by St. Gianna Beretta Molla in Northfield, New Jersey....Read More >>
December 3, 2019
Two Separate Clergy Abuse Suits Filed Against Newark Archdiocese
On Monday, two separate clergy abuse suits were filed against the Newark Archdiocese. In the first case, two of five sisters from Dauphin County, Pennsylvania filed a civil suit against both the Harrisburg Diocese and the Newark Archdiocese for the alleged abuse they endured by the now deceased priest. Originally, the five sisters appeared...Read More >>
December 3, 2019
Defrocked Allentown Diocese Priest Faces Clergy Abuse Complaint
A former Allentown Diocese priest who was defrocked in 2005 faces a clergy abuse claim filed by a female survivor. The survivor alleges that the priest who served in multiple parishes throughout Berks, Lehigh, Northampton, and Schuylkill Counties in Pennsylvania from 1972 to 2001 abused her for 16 years. When the purported abuse began,...Read More >>
November 29, 2019
Traumatic Bonding Among Survivors
One of the frequent effects of clergy sexual abuse on its survivors is difficulty in maintaining positive relationships, because of the because the profound betrayal of trust victims experience. Despite this, many survivors form strong bonds with others who have lived through similar trauma. While these relationships may initially help survivors through a difficult...Read More >>
November 27, 2019
Abusive Priests Remain Out of Prison
According to researchers tracking the Catholic clergy abuse crisis, sexual abuse accusations have been made against more than 6,000 priests. As the media continue to shine a spotlight on the scandal within the Catholic Church, many wonder why many abusive priests remain out of prison despite the credible accusations against them. Unfortunately, obtaining a...Read More >>
November 26, 2019
Two-Year Window Opens for Older Clergy Abuse Suits in New Jersey
The two-year window in which to file older clergy abuse suits in New Jersey will open on Sunday, December 1. Cases involving older claims by abuse survivors will be able to go through the litigation process. It is expected that there will be hundreds of suits filed in the courts, but since there are...Read More >>
November 25, 2019
Former Priest From Metuchen Diocese Charged With Clergy Abuse
A former priest from the Metuchen Diocese faces charges of clergy abuse after being arrested on Wednesday. The charges stem from accusations dating back more than 30 years ago that he sexually assaulted a child who was between 13 and 16 years old. After the accusations surfaced during that time, the Metuchen Diocese removed...Read More >>
November 25, 2019
Survivor Calls for Support Window for Clergy Abuse Claims
For adults who experienced clergy abuse as a child, the ability to file a claim against the individuals responsible is an important part of the healing process. In some states, adult survivors remain unable to file a legal complaint against their abusers due to the statute of limitations laws, which require survivors to file...Read More >>
November 22, 2019
Preventing Abuse and Supporting Survivors
As more incidents of clergy sexual abuse come to light, many individuals are searching for ways to prevent abuse and support survivors who experienced this trauma. Advocates for individuals living in the aftermath of clergy abuse encourage everyone who is willing to help to take one of the simple steps below to support a...Read More >>
November 21, 2019
Catholic Priest Accused of Clergy Abuse at Bronx School
A Catholic priest has been accused of committing clergy abuse while serving at the Mount St. Michael Academy in the Bronx, New York. The accuser claims that the former campus chaplain of the school abused him between the years of 1978 and 1979. Previously, another student filed a lawsuit against the Catholic priest for...Read More >>
November 21, 2019
Pennsylvania Senate Approves Three Child Sex Abuse Bills
The Pennsylvania Senate approved three child sex abuse bills on Wednesday that will assist clergy abuse survivors throughout the state. The bills aim to eliminate the statute of limitations for abuse survivors and allow them to file suits against their abusers. House Bill 962 would enable victims the ability to file suits until they...Read More >>
November 20, 2019
Former Altar Boys File Clergy Abuse Suit Against Pittsburgh Diocese
Two former altar boys filed a clergy abuse suit against the Pittsburgh Diocese, St. Alphonsus Church, and the current bishop on Tuesday. The men claim that they endured abuse for more than three years in the early 1980s by a now deceased priest who served at the St. Alphonsus Church in McDonald, Pennsylvania. They...Read More >>
November 19, 2019
Allentown Diocese Priest Faces Jail Time for Clergy Abuse
An Allentown Diocese priest faces two years in jail for clergy abuse he committed against a 17-year-old girl. On Monday, the priest pled guilty to charges of indecent assault and the corruption of a minor in the Lehigh County Court in Allentown, Pennsylvania. In August 2018, the Allentown Diocese priest was charged with allegedly...Read More >>
November 12, 2019
What Happens After Reporting Clergy Abuse?
Making the decision to report clergy abuse can be very difficult for many survivors. When an individual has been molested or sexual assaulted by a trusted priest or deacon, fear can prevent them from reporting the trauma. Understanding what typically happens after clergy abuse is reported can help many survivors take the first step...Read More >>
November 12, 2019
Longtime Priest in Munhall Convicted of Assault and Misconduct
A longtime priest from Munhall, Pennsylvania was convicted on Friday of clergy abuse. The alleged assault occurred in June 2001 at a three-day camp and involved an 11-year-old boy. At the time, the priest served as the pastor of the St. Therese of Lisieux parish in Munhall. The longtime priest who is currently on...Read More >>
November 11, 2019
Helpful Tips for Clergy Abuse Survivors
The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) continues to work with individuals who have experienced the trauma of clergy abuse. Through member support groups, SNAP works to ensures survivors that clergy abuse, including sexual and physical abuse by priests, deacons, and other religious figures, receive the resources they need to begin healing....Read More >>
November 8, 2019
Hundreds of Priests Accused of Abuse Remain Unsupervised
Recent allegations of clergy abuse throughout the Roman Catholic dioceses are troubling. What is even more concerning is the fact that nearly 1,700 accused priests and other credibly accused clergy members are living unsupervised in communities throughout the country. According to an Associated Press (AP) investigation, priests, monks, deacons, and other church leaders accused...Read More >>
November 5, 2019
Suit Against Albany Bishop Alleges He Told Survivor to “Forget” Abuse
On Monday, a suit was filed against a former Albany bishop alleging that he told the clergy abuse survivor to “forget about” the abuse. The survivor claims that the abuse took place more than 60 years ago when he worked at the Jesuit Retreat House in Glenmont, New York as a teenager. He allegedly...Read More >>
October 29, 2019
New Accusations Arise Against Former New Jersey Cardinal
New clergy abuse accusations have arisen against the former New Jersey Cardinal, Theodore McCarrick, who held the unofficial title as best priest in the state. The Cardinal, who also served as the Archbishop of Newark and the founding Bishop of Metuchen, was defrocked in February by the Vatican after he allegedly abused two boys...Read More >>
October 28, 2019
Clergy Abuse Survivor Files Lawsuit Against Syracuse Diocese
A clergy abuse survivor filed a lawsuit against the Syracuse Diocese and a deceased priest on Thursday. He alleges that the former Utica, New York-area priest committed abuse against him from the time that he was five until he was a sophomore in high school during the 1970s and 1980s. Previously, the survivor filed...Read More >>
October 24, 2019
Three Clergy Abuse Suits Filed Against Former Long Island Bishop
Three clergy abuse survivors filed suits against a former Long Island bishop who allegedly abused them in the 1960s and 1970s. The suits implicate the deceased bishop, the Diocese of Rockville Centre, and St. Agnes Roman Catholic Church in Greenport, New York, where the bishop served from the 1960s until he retired in 2000....Read More >>
October 24, 2019
New Jersey Statute of Limitations Opens Window for Clergy Abuse Survivors
Healing from clergy abuse can be a lifelong process. For many survivors suffering with its post-traumatic effects, may take years or even decades just to recall the details with enough specificity to put a name or date to their abuse. These individuals, like all survivors of abuse, deserve their day in court to seek...Read More >>
October 22, 2019
Survivors React to Ex-Priest’s Sentence
Living with the emotional scars resulting from clergy abuse can be devastating for survivors and their families. For many survivors, seeing the perpetrator convicted for his misconduct can be an important part of the healing process. For the survivors of clergy abuse in one Wisconsin diocese, a recent conviction of an ex-priest in state...Read More >>
October 21, 2019
Survivor Claims Buffalo Diocese Covered Up Actions of Abusive Priest
A survivor of abuse claims that the Buffalo Diocese covered up the complaint he filed against an allegedly abusive priest. In 1968, the man, who was 14 years old at the time, alleged that the priest abused him, which prompted the diocese to remove him from his post at St. John the Evangelist Church...Read More >>
October 17, 2019
Staten Island Church Facing Clergy Abuse Lawsuit by Anonymous Survivor
A Staten Island church faces a new clergy abuse lawsuit filed by an anonymous survivor. The plaintiff who attended the Blessed Sacrament Roman Catholic Church in West Brighton, New York as a student and parishioner alleges that the now defrocked priest abused the survivor between 1989 and 1991 when the individual was 13 and...Read More >>
October 16, 2019
Clergy Abuse Claims Filed Against Rockland County Priest
An abuse survivor filed clergy abuse claims against a Rockland County priest who allegedly committed abuse against the man in the 1970s and 1980s. He currently served as the pastor of the St. Francis of Assisi parish in West Nyack, New York, from 1994 until the present time and as a regional vicar for...Read More >>
October 16, 2019
Pennsylvania’s Clergy Abuse Hotline Receives Close to 2,000 Calls
An unexpectedly large number of phone calls have been made to Pennsylvania’s toll-free hotline, created to allow clergy abuse survivors to report incidents of sexual or physical misconduct by priests. Reports indicate the hotline has received nearly 2,000 calls since its creation last year. The high utilization of the hotline highlights the continuing need...Read More >>
October 15, 2019
Allentown Diocese Removes Lehigh County Priest from Ministry
The Allentown Diocese removed a longtime Lehigh County priest from ministry because of past sexual abuse allegations against a minor. On Sunday, the diocese announced the removal of the current pastor of St. Ursula Church in Fountain Hill, Pennsylvania. The purported abuse occurred in the late 1980s and early 1990s when the priest served...Read More >>
October 14, 2019
Who Can Be Sued in Clergy Abuse Cases?
Making the decision to seek justice after experiencing clergy sexual abuse as a child is one of the bravest things a survivor can do. Holding the perpetrators of the abuse responsible for their actions can be an important step in the healing process. Right to Compensation Dealing with the aftermath of childhood clergy abuse...Read More >>
October 14, 2019
Abuse Suits Filed Against Altoona-Johnstown and Harrisburg Dioceses
Clergy abuse suits were filed against both the Altoona-Johnstown and the Harrisburg Dioceses in two separate cases. An anonymous abuse survivor filed a suit against the Altoona-Johnstown Diocese, the Bishop McCort Catholic High School, and the Franciscan Friars of the Third Order Regular for alleged sexual abuse by a deceased priest who also acted...Read More >>
October 11, 2019
New Allegations Against Former Philadelphia Priest
In most states, individuals must file lawsuits against perpetrators of sexual abuse within a prescribed time frame or they forfeit the right to seek justice. Since many survivors of clergy sexual abuse were children when their trust was violated by a priest, they often find themselves unable to seek legal justice for the abuse...Read More >>
October 10, 2019
Greensburg Diocese Allegedly Covered Up Abuse Claims Against Priest
The Greensburg Diocese allegedly covered up claims of sexual assault and clergy abuse by a priest who served at the Holy Family Church in Seward, Pennsylvania. A woman filed a suit against the priest and diocese that details alleged sexual abuse and rape that occurred from the time that she was ten until she...Read More >>
October 10, 2019
Another Staten Island Priest Accused of Clergy Abuse
Another Staten Island priest faces accusations of clergy abuse in a recent lawsuit filed against the Archdiocese of New York and St. Joseph by-the-Sea High School in Huguenot, New York. The former principal and monsignor allegedly abused a 15-year-old student at the high school between 1980 and 1981. In January 2004, a claim was...Read More >>
October 9, 2019
New Jersey Clergy Abuse Task Force
Established over a year ago, New Jersey’s Clergy Abuse Task Force continues to receive new allegations against Catholic clergy members accused of sexual misconduct, ranging from indecent exposure to sexual molestation and rape. Establishing a Reporting Hotline Created by the Clergy Abuse Task Force last year, the state’s clergy abuse hotline already has received...Read More >>
October 8, 2019
New York Priests Placed on Leave due to Clergy Abuse Accusations
A Mamaroneck priest was placed on temporary leave due to clergy abuse accusations. Cardinal Timothy Dolan of the Archdiocese of New York announced in a letter to members of the church that the priest who served at St. Vito-Most Holy Trinity Church in Mamaroneck, New York was placed on administrative leave. The allegations originate...Read More >>
October 2, 2019
Staten Island Teacher Accuses Monsignor of Abuse
A teacher from Staten Island, New York accused a Monsignor in the New York Archdiocese of clergy abuse in a recently filed lawsuit. The teacher alleges that the Monsignor abused him between 2001 and 2002 when he was receiving counseling as a teenager for multiple personal tragedies at the St. Joseph by-the-Sea High School...Read More >>
October 2, 2019
CHILD USA Rally in Harrisburg to Support Abuse Victims and Survivors
CHILD USA will host a rally and press conference in support of sex abuse victims and survivors after the Pennsylvania Senate hearing, regarding the statute of limitations, ends in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania at the Capitol. It will take place on Wednesday, October 2 at 3pm immediately after the hearing at the Main Rotunda in the...Read More >>
October 2, 2019
Pennsylvania Senate Hearing Will Revisit Child Sex Abuse Laws
On Wednesday, October 2, a Senate hearing in Pennsylvania will revisit child sex abuse laws. Lawmakers will attempt to reform the laws in place that will enable adult survivors who suffered from abuse as children to hold their abusers accountable for their criminal actions. Last year, lawmakers tabled talk of changing the laws and...Read More >>
October 1, 2019
New York Archdiocese Reports Removal of Allegedly Abusive Priests
The New York Archdiocese announced on Monday that all diocesan priests credibly accused of clergy abuse have been removed from ministry. Former federal judge and prosecutor, Barbara Jones, who examined each complaint issued a report that stated that each abusive priest in the diocese that includes New York City and Putnam, Rockland, and Westchester...Read More >>
September 30, 2019
Retired Allentown Priest Removed from Ministry After Admitting Abuse
A retired Allentown priest was removed from ministry after he reported on the abuse that he committed against a minor in the 1980s. The 87-year-old priest who retired eleven years ago but currently served as a substitute priest within the Allentown Diocese admitted to the diocese in May 2019 about the clergy abuse that...Read More >>
September 30, 2019
Victims Compensation Fund to Close in Some Pennsylvania Dioceses
On Monday, September 30, some Pennsylvania dioceses will close the Victims Compensation Fund available to victims of clergy abuse. The Allentown, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and Scranton dioceses will cease the ability for victims to apply for compensation for the abuse they endured by credibly accused clergy members. Last year, these and other Pennsylvania dioceses created...Read More >>
September 26, 2019
Clergy Abuse Suit Filed Against Suspended Priest from Buffalo Diocese
A clergy abuse suit was filed against a suspended priest and the St. Bernadette Parish in Orchard Park, New York. The claim accuses the priest who formerly served in the Buffalo Diocese of abusing a teenage boy during a field trip to Washington, D.C. in 1976 with a group from the St. Bernadette Elementary...Read More >>
September 16, 2019
Alleged Scranton Diocese Abuse Survivor to Remain Anonymous
A judge recently ruled that a clergy abuse survivor who filed a suit against the Scranton Diocese in Scranton, Pennsylvania, the allegedly abusive priest, and current and former bishops will remain anonymous. In November 2018, Attorney Gerald J. Williams from Williams Cedar, co-counsel Attorney Michelle Simpson Tuegel from Dallas, Texas, and Attorney Muhammad S....Read More >>
September 16, 2019
Window for Clergy Abuse Claims Against Rochester Diocese May Close
The one-year window for filing clergy abuse claims against the Rochester Diocese may close early due to their bankruptcy filing. On Thursday, representatives from the Rochester Diocese in Rochester, New York, announced that they were filing for bankruptcy. Abuse survivors may receive settlements more quickly considering the bankruptcy issues, but others who have not...Read More >>
September 16, 2019
Why Clergy Abuse Survivors Stay Silent
Recent grand jury investigations in several states have revealed a pattern of clergy sexual abuse that goes back decades. According to these reports, there could be thousands of survivors who experienced of childhood sexual abuse as far back as the 1940s. Many of these individuals have stayed silent for all those years. With many...Read More >>
September 11, 2019
Brooklyn Diocese Faces Ten New Clergy Abuse Lawsuits
The Brooklyn Diocese in Brooklyn, New York faces ten new clergy abuse lawsuits that were filed on Monday. The abuse allegedly occurred between the years 1952 and 1982, and the filings accuse nearly a dozen clergy members including priests, brothers, and a Catholic school teacher. It is believed that seven of the alleged abusers...Read More >>
September 9, 2019
More Than Just Clergy Abuse
While the media spotlight on clergy sexual abuse of minors continues to raise awareness of the ongoing issue in the Catholic Church, the problem extends beyond priests and bishops. With more survivors filing civil lawsuits against their abusers in those states now permitting individuals to bring claims under reformed statute of limitations, other abusers...Read More >>
September 4, 2019
Defrocked Priest Accused of Abusing Two Altar Boys in Tullytown
Two former altar boys accused a defrocked priest of abusing them in the mid-1990s and early 2000s. The alleged abuse occurred while the former priest served at St. Michael the Archangel parish in Tullytown, Pennsylvania. Throughout his tenure, the Catholic church transferred him to several different parishes due to clergy abuse allegations filed in...Read More >>
September 3, 2019
Former New York Priest Accused of Clergy Abuse at Church in Rye
On Thursday, a clergy abuse survivor filed a lawsuit against a former New York priest, the Church of Resurrection, and the New York Archdiocese. While serving at the Church of Resurrection in Rye, New York, the former priest allegedly abused an altar boy between 1972 and 1973 when the boy was 11 and 12...Read More >>
August 29, 2019
Four Clergy Abuse Survivors File Suit Against Scranton Diocese
On Wednesday, four clergy abuse survivors filed a suit in the Lackawanna County Court in Scranton, Pennsylvania against the Scranton Diocese and the former and current bishops. They allege that the Catholic church leaders within the diocese protected clergy members by creating an environment that encouraged abuse and covered up acknowledged cases of abuse....Read More >>
August 29, 2019
Federal Lawsuit Filed Against Buffalo Diocese due to Former Priest
A second federal lawsuit was filed against the Buffalo Diocese due to the allegedly abusive actions committed by a former priest. The 61-year-old man from New Hampshire claims that the priest who served as an associate pastor at St. Aloysius Church in Springville, New York sexually abused him multiple times between the years of...Read More >>
August 28, 2019
Lawsuit Against Deceased Priest who Alleged Albany Bishop Broke Vows
A new clergy abuse lawsuit targets a deceased priest who originally reported on the former Bishop of the Albany Diocese in 1995 and 2001, alleging that he broke his vows of celibacy by engaging in sexual relations with other priests. The lawsuit alleges that the deceased priest who served in St. Joseph’s Church and...Read More >>
August 27, 2019
Priests Hid From Abuse Claims
New stories are emerging that detail how some priests accused of sexual abuse escaped responsibility after years of sexual misconduct, including the sexual abuse of minors. Recently uncovered was the existence of a network of priest-friendly groups that provided those accused of abuse places to hide where they could escape the spotlight and potential...Read More >>
August 26, 2019
First Catholic Priest Charged After Start of New Jersey Hotline Sentenced
The first Catholic priest to be charged with sexual assault after a call was placed to the New Jersey hotline to report clergy abuse will be sentenced on Monday. In January 2019, the now 42-year-old victim reported alleged assaults committed by a priest who currently served at the St. Philip and St. James Catholic...Read More >>
August 22, 2019
Reporting Sex Abuse to Police
Survivors of sexual abuse deserve justice for the crimes committed against them. In many cases, justice begins with reporting the abuse to the local police. This can be difficult, as survivors may have delayed recollections or sustained trauma from the abuse. Becoming familiar with the process of police reporting can help survivors overcome these...Read More >>
August 20, 2019
Former Priests from Pittsburgh Diocese Accused of Sexual Assault
A man who accused two former priests from the Pittsburgh Diocese of sexual assault has filed a lawsuit against the Diocese and the Holy Family Institute. The plaintiff claims the two priests sexually assaulted him multiple times while he was living at the Holy Family Institute in Emsworth, Pennsylvania. The alleged abuse took place...Read More >>
August 19, 2019
Claim Filed Against Former Syracuse Priest Accused of Clergy Abuse
A lawsuit accused a former Syracuse, New York priest of committing abuse against a minor in the 1970s. On Wednesday, the suit, along with around 1000 others, was filed during the one-year period granted abuse survivors, whose cases previously expired due to the limited statute of limitations, under the New York Child Victims Act...Read More >>
August 19, 2019
Metuchen Bishop
Bishop James F. Checchio of the Diocese of Metuchen recently voiced support of the “Motu Proprio” cannon law for the Catholic Church throughout the world issued by Pope Francis in May 2019. The edict calls for mandatory reporting and investigation into all allegations of sexual abuse by cardinals, bishops, priests, and deacons. The recent...Read More >>
August 15, 2019
Clergy Abuse Filing Upheld in Pennsylvania Superior Court
A clergy abuse filing against the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown was upheld in Pennsylvania Superior Court on Wednesday. This is regarding the claim lodged in June 2019 by a woman who alleged that the diocese was culpable for covering up the abuse she suffered during her youth in the 1970s and 1980s. Originally, her first...Read More >>
August 14, 2019
Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report Released One Year Ago
One year ago, on August 14, 2018, Attorney General Josh Shapiro released the Pennsylvania Grand Jury report which identified more than 300 credibly accused priests who committed criminal acts against minors. The release of the list prompted about 1860 abuse survivors to come forward with their own stories of clergy abuse. The state hotline...Read More >>
August 14, 2019
New York Child Victims Act Opens to File Previously Denied Claims
On Wednesday, the New York Child Victims Act enables clergy abuse survivors and other abuse victims the ability to file claims against their abusers that were denied due to the expiration of the previous statute of limitations. The one-year period, which is also known as the look-back window, allows cases that became dead issues...Read More >>
August 7, 2019
Understanding Survivor Flashbacks
Many survivors of sexual abuse first realize the true nature of their abuse as result of flashbacks. Traumatized individuals can protect themselves from the emotional and physical pain by burying such painful experiences. It may not be until years later that they become fully conscious of the abuse they endured as children. For many...Read More >>
August 5, 2019
American Views on Clergy Abuse
Many Americans are dismayed that the Catholic Church’s assurances of “zero tolerance” seem to have done little to reduce the number of clergy sexual abuse allegations made each year. For the last decade, this crisis has had persistent media coverage. According to a recent study by the Pew Research Center, Americans continue to have...Read More >>
August 2, 2019
Statute of Limitations Expanded in NY via Child Victims Act
Beginning August 14, 2019, the Child Victims Act of New York will give survivors of sexual abuse a path forward. This infographic conveys the purpose and the power of the Act as well as the effort by the Catholic Church to hinder its passage.Read More >>
August 1, 2019
Who is Most Vulnerable to Clergy Abuse?
Sexual predators are often motivated by the need for control and domination over others. That is why children are so often their victims. The majority of clergy abuse cases reported in New Jersey involve survivors who were children at the time they were molested. Children naturally seek the approval and admiration of priests, deacons,...Read More >>
July 30, 2019
Changing the Statute of Limitations
For many survivors of clergy sexual abuse, it can be years before the abuse is brought to light. Some individuals subconsciously bury their painful memories as way to deal with the trauma they experienced. Other survivors were too young at the time of the abuse to understand what was happening to them. When clergy...Read More >>
July 29, 2019
New York Clergy Abuse Survivors Demanding Files on Abusive Priests
Clergy abuse survivors from New York are demanding that the Catholic Church release secret files on credibly accused priests. They are urging current Attorney General Letitia James to push for the release. In September 2018, former AG Barbara Underwood initiated a state-wide probe and subpoenaed all eight New York dioceses to investigate potential cover-ups...Read More >>
July 23, 2019
Clergy Abuse Loophole May Allow Suit Against Harrisburg Diocese
A loophole in the law may allow a clergy abuse suit against the Harrisburg Diocese to be tried in Pennsylvania Superior Court. On Tuesday morning, it was announced that an abuse survivor who was sexually assaulted multiple times by two priests from St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church in the Harrisburg Diocese while serving as...Read More >>
July 22, 2019
Clergy Not Required to Report Confessed Abuse in More Than 40 States
In more than 40 states in the U.S., clergy members are not required to report sex abuse confessed by abusers during confessionals. The following states – New Hampshire, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Texas, and West Virginia — mandated that the clergy must act as mandatory reporters if sins of abuse arise in confessionals....Read More >>
July 11, 2019
Pope Requires Clergy to Report Abuse
In response to the massive number of clergy abuse cases against the Catholic Church, Pope Francis has issued a new reporting policy for all accusations made against Catholic clergy members. While many clergy abuse survivors support the move toward increased transparency and accountability in handling sex abuse matters, other survivors believe it is too...Read More >>
June 27, 2019
New Names Added to List of Credibly Accused Priests
Earlier this month, a newly released 116-page report identified Catholic priests, nuns, deacons and other church officials credibly accused of sexual abuse in New Jersey. Calling the report indicative of an “institutional cover-up of an enormous magnitude,” the list includes the names and parishes of workers affiliated with the Church as recently as last...Read More >>
June 25, 2019
Attorneys from Williams Cedar File Claim of Clergy Abuse Against Roman Catholic Diocese of Metuchen and St. James Catholic Church
Complaint seeks damages arising from sexual abuse of a mentally incapacitated adult by a New Jersey priest. Attorneys from Williams Cedar, Seeger Weiss, LLP, and Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Sorrels, Agosto & Aziz have filed a complaint on behalf of their client against the Roman Catholic Diocese of Metuchen and The Catholic Community of St....Read More >>
June 24, 2019
Michigan Investigation into Clergy Abuse
Michigan law enforcement officers recently arrested four former Michigan priests on charges of sexual misconduct. A warrant for the arrest of a fifth former priest, currently living abroad in India, also has been issued. These arrests follow a series of high profile priest sex abuse investigations in other states including Pennsylvania and New Jersey....Read More >>
June 24, 2019
Clergy Abuse Allegations Filed Against Brooklyn Diocese Priest
On Friday, clergy abuse allegations were filed against a priest from the Brooklyn Diocese in the Brooklyn State Supreme Court in New York. Two men accused the priest who was originally accused of misconduct in 2007 and became defrocked soon afterward. The allegedly abusive priest passed away in 2008. No charges have been filed...Read More >>
June 21, 2019
Fox43 News Interviews Williams Cedar Partner
Fox43 News was in Philadelphia this week interviewing partner Jerry Williams. The investigative report will be airing soon.Read More >>
June 19, 2019
Survivor Urges Trenton Diocese to Release Records on Abuser
A clergy abuse survivor is urging the Trenton Diocese to release personnel records on the priest who abused him and other credibly accused clergy members. When the survivor who wrote a book on clergy abuse attended seminary school at 16 years old, a longtime parish priest at St. Mary of the Lake Church in...Read More >>
June 19, 2019
Clergy Abuse Survivor Rejects Large Settlement from Buffalo Diocese
A clergy abuse survivor rejected a $650,000 settlement from the Buffalo Diocese stating that the diocese knew that the priest was an abuser. The credibly accused priest served at St. Mary of the Assumption Church in Lancaster, New York starting in 1984. Along with the survivor’s accounts of priest abuse, the diocese received three...Read More >>
June 17, 2019
Catholic Dioceses Open New Jersey Compensation Fund for Clergy Abuse
On Saturday, the five Catholic dioceses in New Jersey opened a compensation fund designed to support clergy abuse survivors. The fund will provide financial settlements to individuals who experienced abuse by a clergy member. All five dioceses including Camden, Metuchen, Newark, Paterson, and Trenton united to develop the fund, which is led by Kenneth...Read More >>
June 13, 2019
PA Superior Court Renders Important Decision on Clergy Abuse
Pennsylvania Superior Court Important Clergy Abuse Case By: Gerald J. Williams On June 11, 2019, the Superior Court ruled in favor of the plaintiff in Rice v. Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, et al., reinstating a clergy abuse survivor’s claims that had been dismissed as untimely. This is an extremely important decision. It permits a survivor...Read More >>
June 13, 2019
National Clergy Abuse Reporting Hotline Approved by Catholic Bishops
On Wednesday, U.S. Catholic bishops approved the implementation of a national clergy abuse reporting hotline. The hotline would receive calls and online intakes regarding abuse allegations committed by bishops or instances of covering up abuse. Within the year, the hotline should be operational and will be run by an independent company. Survivors and victims...Read More >>
June 6, 2019
Attorney Williams Comments on Report Revealing the Catholic Church Spent Millions of Dollars Fighting Legislation that Would Help Clergy Abuse Victims
Attorney Gerald J. Williams, a partner at Williams Cedar, commented on the recently released report that reveals the US Catholic Church has poured millions of dollars into fighting legislation that would help victims of clergy sexual abuse. Williams Cedar along with three other firms commissioned the report and collectively represent hundreds of survivors from...Read More >>
June 5, 2019
Catholic Church Spent Millions to Prevent Laws Aiding Abuse Survivors
For eight years, representatives for the Roman Catholic Church engaged in a multi-state lobbying effort to stymie legal reforms aimed at helping survivors of sexual abuse. Data obtained from public filings in those states has just been published in the report entitled Church Influencing State: How the Catholic Church Spent Millions Against Survivors of...Read More >>
May 29, 2019
Pope Francis Claims No Knowledge About McCarrick’s Abusive Actions
In an interview published on Thursday, Pope Francis claims that he knew nothing about the abusive actions former Cardinal McCarrick committed. Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, a former ambassador to Washington, states that he informed the Pope about what penalties McCarrick would face last August. A Catholic news outlet reported the discovery of correspondence from...Read More >>
May 28, 2019
Three New Jersey Nuns Accused of Sexual Abuse
A recent report released in New Jersey identified over 300 clergy members credibly accused of sex abuse. Three New Jersey nuns appeared on the list. A former Paramus Catholic female student accused a member of the Sisters of Charity for clergy abuse that allegedly occurred in the late 1960s when she was fifteen. She...Read More >>
May 20, 2019
Priest Removed from Erie Diocese due to Sex Abuse Allegations
On May 13, it was announced that a priest serving in the Erie Diocese was removed due to sex abuse allegations. The alleged abuse of a minor took place in the 1980s while the priest held a position at the St. John the Baptist Parish in Erie, Pennsylvania. After receiving allegations from the Office...Read More >>
May 14, 2019
Justin Hoffmann v. Diocese of Camden, Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio, and St. James Parish
In conjunction with the newly amended law that allows survivors of sexual abuse more time to file civil actions against their abusers, Justin Hoffmann is getting his day in court. Justin was sexually abused by Brendan V. Sullivan, a Catholic priest at St. James Roman Catholic Church in Ventnor City, NJ, Diocese of Camden....Read More >>
February 20, 2019
Vatican Official Steps Down After Accusations
A Vatican official has stepped down after being accused of sexual abuse. Herman Geissler maintains his innocence, but has resigned from his position as chief of staff in the Congregation of the Doctrine for the Faith, according to a statement by the Holy See. The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith The Roman...Read More >>
February 20, 2019
Attorney Tuegel Comments on Updated New York Child Victims Act
Attorney Michelle Simpson Tuegel, Of Counsel for Williams Cedar, commented on the updated New York Child Victims Act, which recently went into effect. She discusses what the policy changes mean to survivors of clergy abuse and what will happen as a result of the updated act in the state of New York. View the...Read More >>
February 18, 2019
Brooklyn Diocese Releases List of Priests Credibly Accused of Abuse
The Brooklyn, New York diocese released a list of over 100 priests credibly accused of the abuse of minors on Friday. Most priests involved in cases of alleged sexual abuse were ordained between the years of 1930 and 1979. Since the Catholic church enacted reforms back in 2002, only two cases were reported. One...Read More >>
February 18, 2019
Former US Cardinal McCarrick Defrocked by Vatican for Sex Abuse
The Vatican defrocked former US Cardinal Theodore McCarrick for multiple alleged sex abuse charges. On January 11, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith found McCarrick guilty of solicitation of minors and adults during confession and committing adultery. Six months before this, his title of cardinal was taken away, and he was banished...Read More >>
February 18, 2019
Philadelphia Priest Placed on Leave for Sexual Abuse
A Catholic priest who served in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia since 1974 has been placed on leave after credible sexual abuse allegations against him were made. The news of Rev. Steven Marinucci follows an investigation that found two other Philadelphia-area priests “unfit for ministry” due to abuse complaints against them. A third priest, who...Read More >>
February 15, 2019
Governor Cuomo signs Child Victims Act in New York
Williams Cedar’s legal team, along with co-counsel and several represented clients, held a media event in New York City on February 14, 2019 to mark the signing of new legislation.  New York’s Governor Cuomo signed into law the Child Victims Act which provides childhood victims a limited opportunity to sue for damages in sexual...Read More >>
February 15, 2019
New Jersey Priest Admits to Sexual Abuse on Secret Recording
Another New Jersey Catholic priest has been accused of sexual abuse for inappropriate contact with a teenage girl over thirty years ago. This time, it is the accused’s own admissions on a secret recording that will help determine his fate. Pending Criminal Charges The accused priest, the former Youth Director at St. Cecelia’s parish...Read More >>
February 15, 2019
New Jersey Legislature to Expand Statute of Limitations for Abuse Victims
Governor Phil Murphy announced on Thursday that the New Jersey legislature plans to expand the statute of limitations set for cases of sexual abuse. The proposed bill offers survivors of sexual abuse the opportunity to file civil suits against their abusers up until the survivor reaches age 55. The adult survivors would have seven...Read More >>
February 14, 2019
Child USA Publishes 2019 Child Sexual Abuse SOLs
Our legal team strongly endorses the work of Child USA, a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting kids and preventing abuse. The organization’s Founder and CEO, Prof. Marci Hamilton, is a national expert on child sex abuse and the statutes of limitations that limits victims’ ability to pursue justice. Child USA’s website provides an excellent...Read More >>
February 14, 2019
Newark, NJ Diocese Releases List of Credibly Accused Priests
On February 13, 2019, the Newark Diocese in New Jersey released a list of credibly accused priests. View the entire list here. If you believe that you or a loved one experienced abuse by a clergy member on this list, the legal team at Williams Cedar can help put an end to the silence...Read More >>
February 14, 2019
Attorney Williams Comments on NJ Credibly Accused Abusive Priests List
Attorney Gerald J. Williams of Williams Cedar commented on the recently released New Jersey list of priests credibly accused of the sexual abuse of children. The article covers the varied reactions regarding the publication of the list and how it affects the child abuse victims and survivors as well as those who practice the Catholic...Read More >>
February 14, 2019
Pope Downplays Expectations for Clergy Abuse Crisis
A scheduled meeting of Catholic bishops planned for late February in Rome may not prove as helpful as many abuse survivors hope. According to recent comments by Pope Francis, the summit of bishops is not meant to address systematic change, but merely to raise more awareness of the problem of child abuse among the...Read More >>
February 13, 2019
NJ Catholic Dioceses Release List of Hundreds of Credibly Accused Clergy
In New Jersey, the five Catholic dioceses within the state released a list of nearly 190 clergy members credibly accused of the sexual abuse of children. Throughout the day on Wednesday, the list for each diocese became available starting with a list of about 65 priests, which escalated to about 190. The master list,...Read More >>
February 6, 2019
Non-Clergy Abuse Survivors May Not Be Eligible for Victim Fund Payouts
There are countless survivors of clergy sexual abuse in the U.S. and around the world. Many of the children who suffered these horrors were abused by priests, but many others were molested by others associated with the church. The predators fall into many roles, but all had access to vulnerable children. Some of those...Read More >>
February 4, 2019
Proposed Bill to Require Clergy to Report Abuse
Lawmakers in the District of Columbia and Virginia are working together on legislation that would affect how child abuse and neglect cases are handled. This comes on the heels of the many reports of sex abuse by Catholic Church clergy members in states throughout the country, including Pennsylvania. The proposed law would require clergy...Read More >>
February 1, 2019
Dallas Catholic Diocese Releases List of Abusive Priests
On Thursday, the Dallas, Texas Catholic diocese released a list of over 30 credibly accused abusive priests who held around 180 assignments in the diocese throughout their careers. Retired FBI employees, former state troopers, and law enforcement officers made up the investigation team. The diocese did not disclose the identities of the investigators. The Survivors...Read More >>
January 30, 2019
Passage of New York Child Victims Act
Clergy abuse lawyers at Williams Cedar LLC and Seeger Weiss LLP applaud the recently passed New York Child Victims Act, which allows victims of sexual abuse a longer period of time to file suit against their abusers and those who allowed the abuse to continue. On Monday, January 28, 2019, the New York legislature passed...Read More >>
January 28, 2019
U.S. Bishops Gather at Mundelein Seminary for Retreat
On Wednesday, January 2, hundreds of bishops throughout the U.S. convened at the Mundelein Seminary in Mundelein, Illinois for a week-long retreat. The retreat featured days of prayer and reflection for the bishops and cardinals involved in the clergy abuse scandal that has overwhelmed countless dioceses across the country. Before tackling clergy abuse, which...Read More >>
January 28, 2019
Retired Priest in Pittsburgh Arrested for Sexual Abuse of Child
On Friday, a retired priest in Pittsburgh was arrested for the sexual abuse of a child back in the early 2000s. Reverend Hugh Lang served at St. Therese of Lisieux in Munhall, Pennsylvania during the time of the abuse. He assaulted a 10-year-old boy while the child was undergoing altar service training in June...Read More >>
January 23, 2019
Lawmakers Introduce Revised New York Child Victims Act
Lawmakers in New York will introduce a revised New York Child Victims Act, which will allow child abuse survivors to file claims against their perpetrators as adults. The proposed legislation would increase the eligibility age of the survivor in filing a suit from 23 to 55 years old. Formerly, abuse victims would be required...Read More >>
January 23, 2019
Priest Presides Despite Clergy Abuse Settlements
Recent scandals surrounding the Catholic Church reflect widespread clergy abuse in Pennsylvania and throughout the country. The abuse continued for decades, often going unreported or ignored. The Church failed to protect thousands of victims, instead engaging in a cover-up to protect guilty clergy members. Some predator priests were relocated to remote parishes or non-English...Read More >>
January 21, 2019
Illinois Priests Accused of Additional Cases of Sexual Abuse
The Illinois Attorney General has completed an independent investigation into allegations of sexual abuse by Catholic priests revealing over 500 additional cases in the state. Previously, the Church identified only 185 cases of abuse and the state now accuses the Church of underestimating the extent of its clergy sexual abuse problem. Credible Claims The...Read More >>
January 18, 2019
Pope Urges Priests to Turn Themselves In  
Recently in Vatican City, the Pope delivered his annual Christmas speech. In it, he focused on the scandal of sexual misconduct and the ongoing cover-up that has shaken the very foundation of the Catholic Church worldwide. Pope Francis promised the Church will “never again” overlook sex abuse accusations. He acknowledged that church hierarchy acted...Read More >>
January 16, 2019
List of Former Priests Accused of Sex Abuse Released
A new list released by the USA Northeast Province Jesuits (UNPJ) on Tuesday features a former priest from Pennsylvania and ten other former priests from New Jersey credibly accused of the sex abuse of minors. Since the list dates back from 1950, many of the clergy members left the ministry or passed away. The former...Read More >>
January 16, 2019
Bishops Gather to End Clergy Sex Abuse; Survivors are Skeptical
Hundreds of Catholic bishops and cardinals from across the United States recently met in Mundelein Seminary in Chicago’s northern suburbs. The plan for the weeklong retreat was to focus on prayer and spiritual reflection over the ever-growing scandal of child sexual abuse within the church. The retreat is a prelude to a summit to...Read More >>
January 14, 2019
Philadelphia Archdiocese Finds Two Priests Unsuitable for Ministry
On Sunday, the Philadelphia Archdiocese deemed two priests unsuitable for ministry and put a third priest on administrative leave. After concluding their own internal investigation of two Philadelphia priests, which commenced after law enforcement officials finished theirs, the Archdiocese confirmed the sexual abuse allegations against the clergy members. They found evidence to support the...Read More >>
January 14, 2019
Allentown Diocese Develops New Position to Combat Clergy Abuse
The Allentown Diocese developed a new position to combat clergy abuse. Pamela Russo who is a highly qualified and licensed social worker with past experience with child welfare and abuse issues was placed into the role as Diocesan Secretary for Youth Protection and Catholic Human Services. Previously, she held positions with Catholic Human Services,...Read More >>
January 14, 2019
Sex Abuse in the Catholic Church: A Year in Review
Last year was especially devastating for the Catholic church, while it may have been wholly liberating for many of the church’s victims. In 2018, a shocking grand jury report offered the repugnant details of decades of child abuse that took place in dioceses across Pennsylvania. The church’s reaction, however, was anything but contrite. For...Read More >>
January 10, 2019
Catholic Church Continues to Break Its Own Laws
In 2002, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops announced a plan to address the widespread clergy sexual abuse that had been exposed by the Boston Globe. Under the new standards, the church would ban priests who abused children from working in the church; perform background checks on any church staff members working with...Read More >>
January 4, 2019
Finding Out Your Child Was Abused
One of the most difficult things to handle as a parent is finding out that your child was abused. You may feel confused, angry, grief-stricken, betrayed, or even numb and unable to fully understand what happened. While there is no right or wrong way to process the awful news, there are some things you...Read More >>
January 2, 2019
Coming Out About Sexual Abuse
Every eight minutes, a child in the United States is sexually assaulted. That shocking statistic belies the fact that there are many incidents of child sexual abuse that are never reported, or that are reported many years later. The same is true of adults who have experienced sexual abuse. This is evidenced by the...Read More >>
December 28, 2018
American Priest Arrested in the Philippines for Sexual Abuse
The U.S. clergy sexual abuse scandal now has spread across the world. Earlier this month, a 77-year old American priest working in the Philippines was arrested under a U.S. warrant for allegedly sexually abusing Filipino altar boys. Charged with illicit sexual conduct with minors, the Catholic priest faces deportation and a lifelong ban from...Read More >>
December 20, 2018
Some Clergy Abuse Victims Being Denied for Catholic Compensation Funds
Some clergy abuse victims may be unable to access the compensation funds provided by the Catholic church dioceses. The Archdiocese of Philadelphia, along with other Pennsylvania dioceses, have rejected some applications for compensation because the abusive priests belong to Independent Catholic religious orders. Even when the abuse of the victims occurred at the parishes...Read More >>
December 19, 2018
Priests Moved to Cover Up Abuse
Recent reports have uncovered decades of abuse by Catholic priests and other religious figures across the country. Based on a two-year investigation into six Pennsylvania dioceses, the Pennsylvania Attorney General estimates that there were more than 1,000 child victims of abuse dating back to 1947 in Pennsylvania alone. Clergy abuse victims in California are...Read More >>
December 18, 2018
Jesuits Release Names of Priests Accused of Credible Sex Abuse
On Monday, the Maryland Province Jesuits released a list of the names of the priests accused of sexual abuse of children. The religious order that serves the Washington, D.C. area as well as eight other states cited about a dozen Jesuits including five living individuals, three who left the order, and five others who...Read More >>
December 17, 2018
Predator Priests Still Paid by Catholic Church in PA
A recent report revealed that for decades, hundreds of Catholic priests sexually abused over 1,000 child victims in Pennsylvania. The abuse was often reported, but was largely ignored by the Church, which participated in covering up predator priests’ transgressions. Priests were either shuffled from parish to parish, or sent to non-English speaking immigrant communities...Read More >>
December 15, 2018
Long List of Abusive Jesuit Priests Made Public
In the past few years the Catholic clergy abuse scandal has become more transparent. Even so, only half of the accused priests have been publicly named. Dioceses around the world have been releasing the names of abusive priests since August of this year, when 301 predatory priests in Pennsylvania were identified in a grand...Read More >>
December 6, 2018
NJ Sexual Abuse Act Blog
Please read a very timely blog on the New Jersey Sexual Abuse Act written by partner Jerry Williams here.Read More >>
December 5, 2018
Pennsylvania Superior Court Allows Pursuit of Clergy Abuse Claim
The Pennsylvania Superior Court in Pittsburgh allowed the pursuit of a clergy abuse claim against the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown. On Tuesday, a 50-year-old woman from Altoona, Pennsylvania filed a claim against the diocese and a priest for sexual abuse she endured in the 1970s as a girl between the ages of eight and 14....Read More >>
December 4, 2018
Attorney Tuegel Comments on New Litigation After Grand Jury Report
Attorney Michelle Simpson Tuegel, Of Counsel for Williams Cedar, provided commentary on the rise in new litigation for clergy abuse cases after the August 2018 release of the Pennsylvania grand jury report. The article states the reasons for the rise and also how the grand jury report spurred on new cases for abuse survivors...Read More >>
December 4, 2018
Court Rules that Names in Clergy Abuse Report Remain Anonymous
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that the names of the priests whose names were redacted from the clergy abuse report will remain anonymous. On Monday, the court confirmed that they will not reveal the names of eleven of the over 300 abusive priests listed in the August report. Detractors including Attorney General Josh Shapiro...Read More >>
December 3, 2018
Attorney Williams Discusses Diocese Clergy Abuse Compensation Funds
Attorney Gerald J. Williams from Williams Cedar discussed his thoughts on the clergy abuse compensation funds being offered by various Pennsylvania dioceses. The Archdiocese of Philadelphia opened up their compensation funds to survivors first and the other dioceses will follow with their own. He also talked about how the potential change in Pennsylvania’s statute...Read More >>
December 3, 2018
Legal Fees Rise for Catholic Dioceses Due to Abuse Allegations
Due to the sex abuse allegations that arose from the grand jury report that was released in August, legal fees for Catholic dioceses in Pennsylvania have risen. Two dioceses, notably Greensburg and Erie, Pennsylvania, report legal fees totaling around five million dollars and expect them to increase. Each diocese insists that legal fees will...Read More >>
December 3, 2018
Church Silenced Victims and Advocates
Even as more sexual abuse cases by Catholic Church clergy members are revealed, many victims and survivors remain silent because they fear repercussions. They are not alone; many of their advocates say they have also been persecuted for speaking out about the abuse. An August 2018 report by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Allentown...Read More >>
November 30, 2018
Female Clergy Abuse Victims
Headlines reporting the alleged sexual abuse of children by members of the clergy continue to dominate the media. As incidents taking place in Philadelphia and the surrounding Pennsylvania dioceses are brought to light, stories of clergy abuse against older female victims have become more frequent. For female clergy abuse victims, the aftermath of sexual...Read More >>
November 29, 2018
Limitations of Compensation Funds
As we have written previously in this space, several dioceses in Pennsylvania and New Jersey have announced the formation of monetary funds to compensate survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic clergy. Like many stakeholders, including virtually all survivor activists and support groups, we have pointed out the limitations of these programs as remedies for...Read More >>
November 28, 2018
Review and Compensation Programs
Several Pennsylvania dioceses, including Philadelphia, Allentown, Scranton, Harrisburg, and Pittsburgh have announced plans to establish “Review and Compensation” programs to assess claims of survivors and make monetary payments to them. The Diocese of Newark, covering all New Jersey parishes, has announced a similar plan. These programs each have advantages and disadvantages that any potential...Read More >>
November 27, 2018
Williams Cedar Holds Press Conference Regarding Diocese of Scranton Suit
The Philadelphia law firm of Williams Cedar held a press conference to announce the filing of a civil lawsuit against a former priest from the Scranton Diocese. The lawsuit originates from allegations of sexual abuse of the plaintiff by a former Catholic priest named in the recent Pennsylvania grand jury report. The press conference...Read More >>
November 27, 2018
Documentary “The Keepers” Examines Murder of Baltimore Nun
A documentary series on Netflix, “The Keepers,” examines the murder of a Baltimore nun in the late 1960s. Sister Cathy purportedly lost her life after she was about to reveal abuse pervading the Seton Keough High School. Allegedly, over 100 victims were abused by clergy members, and the state protected priests who may have...Read More >>
November 26, 2018
Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report Prompted Nationwide Probes
The Pennsylvania grand jury report identifying sexually abusive priests and detailing criminal acts against children prompted other states across the country to conduct their own probes. In 14 states, including Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Vermont, and Virginia as well as in the District...Read More >>
November 19, 2018
Pennsylvania Sex Abuse Legislation Delayed Until Next Year
The Pennsylvania state legislature finished their two-year session without any type of closure regarding the debate over the removal of the statute of limitations in filing sex abuse civil suits. Voting on the removal will be shelved until next year, which leaves many survivors of clergy abuse still unable to hold their abusers accountable...Read More >>
November 16, 2018
Federal Suit Filed Against Pennsylvania Catholic Bishops
In Philadelphia, a federal lawsuit was filed against Pennsylvania Catholic bishops by two clergy sex abuse survivors. The claim was filed on Thursday to force Pennsylvania Catholic bishops to identify the names of abusive priests and disclose the records of accusations of sexual abuse against children in their dioceses. They will use public hazard...Read More >>
November 14, 2018
Clergy Abuse Victims Fund Starts in Philadelphia Archdiocese
The Archdiocese of Philadelphia started their clergy abuse victims fund to compensate survivors of abuse by clergy members. The new fund called the Independent Reconciliation and Reparation Program will compensate survivors and acknowledge claims that may exceed the statute of limitations. Survivors from Philadelphia, Bucks, Montgomery, Chester, and Delaware Counties may submit claims to...Read More >>
November 14, 2018
Former Altar Boy Comments on Diocese of Allentown Lawsuit
A former altar server at the church involved in the lawsuit against the Diocese of Allentown, Pennsylvania commented on his experience and the suit in a recent news report. On Monday, Williams Cedar filed the suit on behalf of a 29-year-old man who served as an altar boy against the Diocese of Allentown, the...Read More >>
November 13, 2018
Sex Abuse Reforms Vote at Bishops’ Conference Halted by Vatican
On Monday, during the US Conference of Catholic Bishops held in Baltimore, the Vatican halted the vote on the sex abuse reforms that were to be proposed. The president of the bishops’ conference, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, received a sealed envelope marked “confidential” on Sunday night from the Vatican ordering that the vote be delayed....Read More >>
November 12, 2018
Williams Cedar Holds Press Conference Regarding Suit Against Diocese of Allentown
The Philadelphia law firm of Williams Cedar held a press conference on Monday, November 12 to announce the filing of a civil action against the Diocese of Allentown. The lawsuit stems from the alleged sexual abuse of the plaintiff by a Catholic priest named in the recent Pennsylvania grand jury report. Attorney Gerald J. Williams of...Read More >>
November 9, 2018
Pennsylvania Catholic Dioceses Setting Up Clergy Abuse Victim Funds
Several Catholic dioceses in Pennsylvania are setting up funds for victims of sexual abuse. On Thursday, the archdiocese of Philadelphia and the Catholic dioceses of Allentown, Harrisburg, and Scranton announced details regarding the institution of victim compensation funds. The diocese of Pittsburgh plans to start a similar fund for sex abuse victims and will...Read More >>
November 5, 2018
Catholic Church Bishops Avoided Accountability in Sex Abuse Cases
Catholic church bishops throughout the United States have managed to avoid accountability in the swath of clergy sexual abuse cases that appeared in the Pennsylvania grand jury report and beyond. A 2002 report in Boston, Massachusetts revealed the many instances of child sexual abuse committed by clergy members, so in Dallas, Texas that same...Read More >>
October 31, 2018
First Annual All Survivors Day Commences on November 3
The first annual All Survivors Day will commence on Saturday, November 3 all over the world. Sexual abuse survivors, their loved ones, supporters for the protection of victims, and advocates of the cause will join to show solidarity with individuals who endured this type of abuse. The day will promote changing the culture that...Read More >>
October 30, 2018
Former Pennsylvania Priest Facing Child Sex Abuse Charges
A former Pennsylvania priest faces child sex abuse charges after pleading guilty at the Jefferson County Court of Common Pleas in Brookville, Pennsylvania in mid-October. The 64-year-old former priest who presided in the Erie, Pennsylvania diocese for around 40 years pled guilty to charges of corruption of a minor and child endangerment. He faces...Read More >>
October 30, 2018
Buffalo Bishop Richard Malone Knew of Widespread Clergy Abuse
In August 2018, an anonymous individual leaked sensitive church documents regarding clergy abuse to Buffalo ABC-affiliate WKBW. That person has now gone public with her story on a recent episode of CBS News “60 Minutes”. Her name is Siobhan O’Connor, and what she has uncovered details an orchestrated effort to coverup clergy abuse dating...Read More >>
October 29, 2018
Feds Urge Conference of Catholic Bishops to Retain Their Records
Federal prosecutors have urged the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops to retain their records regarding sexual abuse allegations and incidents on file. The prosecutors made this request on the same day that each Catholic diocese in Pennsylvania received subpoenas for their confidential records on clergy abuse cases. Initial reports did not disclose the...Read More >>
October 23, 2018
Feds Sorting Through Evidence in Pennsylvania Clergy Abuse Investigation
Last week, the federal government began a clergy abuse investigation in Pennsylvania after a grand jury report issued in August named over 300 priests as potential child predators. The feds subpoenaed secret and confidential records from the Catholic church to determine whether those clergy members committed federal crimes. They sought evidence for five distinct...Read More >>
October 22, 2018
Clergy Abuse and the Statute of Limitations
Justice – And Common Sense – Demand a Change by Gerald Williams, Esq. The recent publication of the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s searing report on the sexual abuse committed by priests from multiple dioceses throughout the Commonwealth has refocused public attention on an old problem  ̶  and why it has persisted for decades. As horrific...Read More >>
October 19, 2018
Federal Government Opens Clergy Abuse Investigation in Pennsylvania
The federal government will begin a clergy abuse investigation in Pennsylvania after issuing subpoenas to dioceses across the state to retrieve confidential files with testimony from prominent church leaders. The issuance of the subpoenas follows the grand jury report that revealed information about over 300 priests who molested thousands of children for over 70...Read More >>
October 17, 2018
Catholic Donor Urges Senators to Stand Up for Clergy Abuse Victims
A donor to many Catholic charities who was instrumental in bringing the Pope to Philadelphia in 2015 urged senators to stand up for clergy abuse victims. The donor text-messaged each Pennsylvania senator on Tuesday and posed a question regarding the vote on the proposed bill that will allow a two-year reprieve for older child sex abuse...Read More >>
  • FREE Case Evaluation Consultation