Friday, September 12, 2008

Controversial Judge Has Jesuit Conections And Kennedy Family Connection

Head of bishops' panel criticizes clerics
By Michael Paulson, Globe Staff

September 8, 2008

The Illinois Supreme Court justice who headed a board chosen by the Catholic bishops to assist them with preventing clergy sexual abuse accuses one of the nation's top Catholic prelates of dishonesty and sharply criticizes a second in Kerry Kennedy's new book, "Being Catholic Now," which is being released tomorrow.

The two cardinals named by Justice Anne M. Burke, Francis E. George of Chicago and Edward M. Egan of New York, both issued statements to the Globe rejecting the criticism. Burke, who was interim chair of the National Review Board for the US Conference of Catholic Bishops for two years, details the scope of her concern about the American bishops in an interview with Kennedy, a daughter of Robert F. Kennedy, in her book.
She says the board "started having problems with individual cardinals and bishops who thought we were too aggressive," and that "bishops got away with concealing crime," and "just when you think these bishops are getting it, they turn around and do something that in any other enterprise would result in their own dismissal."
She also alleges that, after Frank Keating, former governor of Oklahoma, was forced to resign as board chairman because he compared the bishops to the Mafia, the bishops declined to make her the permanent chairwoman because "there was no way they were going to appoint a woman to the position of chair."
Burke's strongest criticism is aimed at George, who is now the president of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops. She says the cardinal withheld from her the fact that he was housing in his residence a priest accused of abuse in Delaware. She says she was "furious at his casual attitude" and that "the cardinal wasn't honest with me. Perhaps he was not honest with himself."

Link to the article (here)

Justice Burke's lecture at Loyola Chicago (here) and is a commencement speaker at Loyola Chicago Law School (here)

Justice Burke receives honorary degree at Holy Cross (here)

Justice Burke advocates extremist Catholic organizations Call to Action and Voice of the Faithful (here)

The eminent Jesuit Avery Cardinal Dulles disagrement with Justice Burke (here)

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