The Michigan Attorney General released a report regarding sexual abuse in the Diocese of Gaylord. The complete report is available here.
The Diocese immediately responded, obviously anticipating the release. Bishop Walsh released a video statement with the usual and expected response of apology followed by a summary of the efforts the Diocese has made regarding sexual abuse. Glaringly lacking was an explanation of the root of the problem, namely, a gross lack of regard for celibacy and the Sixth Commandment. Missing in his explanation was the lack of clarity that sexual acts by clergy are grossly aberrant. Also lacking was an explanation as to how this was allowed (and is still occurring) in the clergy of the United States. Who was responsible for ordaining these clergy and allowing them to continue in ministry until it was blatantly obvious for at least some of these clergy that they have been involved in this for years? The Bishop also made a clear distinction between sexual abuse of minors and other abuse allegations. Why is this necessary? Were Father Cowan’s credible allegations (with witnesses) against the disgraced Father Stilwell somehow less of an issue for a priest to be engaged in?
Gaylord Diocesan Watch will be providing detailed analysis of the report over the coming weeks.