08Sep American bishop escapes jail

The judge and the prosecutor handed Bishop Finn a Hershey chocolate bar and then  unwrapped it for him. A far cry from the maximum year in prison or from the seven months in jail recommended by the Grand Jury after hearing all the evidence. What happened to the investigation done by the diocese that the clerical authorities didn’t do their job? Were all these swept under the rug to save the Bishop any hurt?

Did the prosecutor go wobbly? This was more of an ice cream social than a bench trial about exposing sexually abused children by predator priest. The Bishop never had the discomfort or the pain of facing the abused victims, yet he was allowed to testify on behalf of himself at a Bench Trial. The victims didn’t even know about this hastily put together Bench Trial, nor did they have access to the diocese ATM card to hire fancy lawyers to match those of the Bishop.

One can’t blame the prosecutor for realizing that none of the abused children can vote for her. So why not let the Bishop off the hook and actually allow him to testify at the Judge’s bench hearing? The Bishop and his crew of lawyers can at least vote for her. The non voting abused children must have been surprised to find that the Sept 24th jury trial that they waited over a year for was already over. This is justice? The abused must still suffer, but the Bishops is free to do business as usual.

We are back to cover up and if you are caught, bring out the diocese ATM card and pay to have them go away. The question Is Bishop Finn above the law? The answer is yes. What a loss for the most vulnerable among us and what a victory for the well financed, isolated Bishop who will continue to empty the pews with Vatican approval.

4 Responses

  1. Cyril North

    People need to know about this. The abuse of power in such cases needs to be publicised. Public apathy about such matters means it will happen again and again. Excellent article.

  2. Julie

    The outrage is understandable. Given state law, the penalty
    may be correct; misdemeaner, first offence. It seems to me that there is little to be gained by chasing sad, geriatric abusers. At least one bishop has been found accountable. More must follow. The uncovering of the cover-up has begun. Let it go to its source, wherever that may be. Then there will be change.
    Julie Mackey

  3. Raymond Hickey Bordine

    As one who lives in America and has followed this case closely, I too found the outcome in this case with Bishop Finn to be outrageous. When I read the verdict, my first thought was “It must be nice to have friends in high places!”

    We have here in America what is called ‘the good ole boys’ network’. In other words, those in power and control take care of each other; a ‘professional courtesy’. If this Finn fella hadn’t been a bishop, he would now be behind bars doing hard time. His strategy was very simple and very effective: call in a few favors from your political and judicial friends.

    In America, the right-wing of the Republican Party is synonymous with the hierarchy of the RCC. The two are one, and the concepts of Christian justice and fairness go by the wayside while Jesus weeps for those little ones who were defiled. The ‘sanctifiers’ became the ‘polluters’.

  4. Joe O'Leary

    I am tired of indignant SNAP folks second-guessing the law. This is of a piece with their reactions to this case, and many others, from day one.