Monday, March 28, 2011

Jesuits Pay Out A Quarter Of A Billion Dollars For Oregon Province Legal Settlements

The payout, "one of the largest … in the Roman Catholic Church's sex-abuse crisis, and the largest by a religious order," came in the form of a bankruptcy settlement and was believed to be approximately $166.1 million, according to the Seattle Times. Insurance companies would provide about $118 million and the Jesuits would contribute $48.1 million. The Oregon province of the Rome-based Jesuit order covers Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington, according to Reuters, which reported that most victims were Alaska Natives or Native Americans. The victims were "sexually or psychologically abused as children by Jesuit missionaries in those states in the 1940s through the 1990s," according to the plaintiffs' attorneys. About 57 priests had been identified and removed, and 700 victims compensated nearly $250 million, including this week's settlement,
Link (here) to the full story at Alaska Dispatch

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

This headline is mendacious.

As the article tells us, the Jesuits have NOT paid out $250 million, or even nearly "$250 million" the number the article mentions.

Of the funds paid, at least $118.1 million, and almost certainly quite a bit more came from the insurance companies.

"Insurance companies would provide about $118 million."

It's not fair to the Jesuits to round sums up for a catchier title, and it's inaccurate and dishonest to fudge what looks like $120 million if not, going by the ratio in the final settlement of 5:12, $170 million.

If Joe Fromm can't, or doesn't want to, get the simple numbers straight when they really matter, he may want to mull other vocations.

Anonymous said...

Is there a statute of limitations in Oregon?

Some awful creative lawyering as some of these allegations are over 40 years old and the abusers are dead.

Don't misunderstand, the insurance companies wouldn't be shelling out that kind of money unless they were fairly certain on liability.

Anonymous said...

@Anona 12.10: if the Jesuits were certain of their innocence, they would have gone to court, don't you think? This way, they pay what they have to and avoid a number of nauseating exposes based on public trials, etc. ...

Anonymous said...

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/29/us/29jesuit.html?_r=1&nl=todaysheadlines&emc=tha23

Anonymous said...

Anon #3,

what I believe Anon #2 is pointing out is that the Jesuits are being judged with different standards than other people, in that the statute of limitations was moved backwards.

Sexual abuse is a very emotional issue, so few people argue against justice for victims; that said, many, many corporations and others would be in huge trouble were it not for the statute of limitations.

Justice is never perfect, but it does seem a bit unfortunate when people have to pay for what dead people did decades before.

Anonymous said...

@Anon 11.01 -- the priests were very much alive when they abused people. The problem is the Order, which shuffles bad priests around, keeping them 2 steps in front of the law. It becomes a 'catch me if you can' game. If the Order can keep the shell game running long enough, the abusers die in the meantime. Not so with Don McGuire. Read today's NY Times. The Chicago province had to produce a tons of docs. It's all there. The province knew everything and turned a blind eye to it all. Sick.

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:27, what you say and what I say in no way contradict each other.

Wishing predators had been nabbed much earlier, and wishing that it hadn't come to the somewhat distasteful act of punishing the living for the very real crimes of the dead are two sides of the same coin. The money the province must now disgorge was earned by the sweat of the brow of the hard working people who supported them, and not from some fairy. It is sad - but only just - to see it have to go the way it does.

My brother took a long time to bounce back to normal after living with a dysfunctional cleric, though he was not abused, so I have no sympathy at all for such people. That said, "back in the day" one dared not speak the name of such things, and they were covered up far and wide, at schools, in other denominations, in synagogues, at the YMCA... I don't think the order still shuffles people around, and I don't think it is fair to only judge the order, without saying that at the time what the order did was the norm in most of the society in which the order did what it did.

Anonymous said...

@Anon 12.05: I agree with you. Except for the part that the Jesuits don't shuffle people around anymore. Read today's article http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/29/us/29jesuit.html?_r=1&nl=todaysheadlines&emc=tha23 Even just a couple years ago, the Chicago province was covering for the scumbag McGuire, who has now been defrocked and has been convicted...Look at Philadelphia case, same thing, very recent cases...

Anonymous said...

@Anon 12.05: I agree with you. Except for the part that the Jesuits don't shuffle people around anymore. Read today's article http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/29/us/29jesuit.html?_r=1&nl=todaysheadlines&emc=tha23 Even just a couple years ago, the Chicago province was covering for the scumbag McGuire, who has now been defrocked and has been convicted...Look at Philadelphia case, same thing, very recent cases...

Maria said...

Suit Says Jesuits Ignored Warnings About Priest
By ERIK ECKHOLM
Published: March 28, 2011

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/29/us/29jesuit.html?_r=1&nl=todaysheadlines&emc=tha23

READ THE ENTIRE MOTION BY CLICKING ON "MOTION" IN THE 2ND PARAGRAPH.

GO TO PAGES 37-38 TO READ, SPECIFICALLY,WHAT THE SOCIETY KNEW.

James Martin SJ, @ America Magazine, may want to reserve a little moral indignation for he and his confreres. The motion will answer his question: How could this happen after the Dallas Charter?

To read this motion, and not believe, that Lucifer has infiltrated our Holy Mother Church is to be deaf, dumb and blind.

We do not carry His Cross. We are on it, with Him. God have Mercy on the Society and ourselves.

Anonymous said...

Anon 1:41 PM. I have seen the Jesuits, of the Chicago Province no less, move with extreme speed to get to the bottom of more recent accusations.

Bear in mind that the McGuire saga appears to a) either date back to the day when these things were covered up or b) have happened overseas, where others might have jurisdiction and which are hard to investigate, or c) have happened in the US at events that didn't happen at Jesuit institutions.

It's sad to say, but quite a few of the victims come from troubled, perhaps flaky, families (why else are they chosen), and it can be quite difficult to get to the bottom of things when all of parties are a bit eccentric.

Maria said...

Anonymous said...
Anon 1:41 PM.

Who do you think you are talking to? Idiots?

Joseph Fromm said...

Dear Anon March 28, 2011 6:02 PM,
Thank you for your participation. Please come and add more of your thoughts. Discourse is good, even if you disagree with my blog titles.
JMJ

Joe

Maria said...

This link takes you to:
THE JESUITS AND DONALD MCGUIRE SJ A MANAGEMENT HISTORY

www.bishop-accountability.org/.../jesuits/McGuire_Donald/Punitive_Damages_Motion/

Surprise. Surprise. The good guys, Frs. Hardon and Fessio SJ, were on the job. This link provides all the docs and records.

Anonymous said...

Um, Maria...are you aware that Fessio has testified tht he "doesn't recall" a NUMBER of letters he wrote RECOMMENDING McGuire as a spiritual director and teacher? Even AFTER he had told superiors about McGuire sleeping with little boys?

Wow.

Maria said...

Um, Maria...are you aware that Fessio has testified tht he "doesn't recall" a NUMBER of letters he wrote RECOMMENDING McGuire as a spiritual director and teacher? Even AFTER he had told superiors about McGuire sleeping with little boys?

GOOD LUCK WITH THAT SMEAR CAMPAIGN.

Anonymous said...

@Anon 4.04 p.m. on March 29: Spoken like a true Jesuit. You sound exactly like those priests I know who continue to blame the victims. Like Maria said, who do you think you're talking to? Idiots? Your post reeks of someone who is desperate to protect his own, lavish lifestyle, paid for by the faithful. Do you honestly believe it makes a difference where the abuse took place and how long ago? Flaky families? You are sick.

Anonymous said...

Anon 4:23, I wrote you a long post explaining myself, but I either didn't post it right, or it got swallowed.

a) I am not a Jesuit, and at the moment do not attend a Roman Catholic church, largely because I have some things to settle with abusers. Nobody I know has told me I'm anything like a stooge.

b) the predators often pick victims from families that have other problems, because they know they stand a much better chance of getting away with it (predators and criminals in general always pick on the vulnerable,) and this sometimes makes getting to the bottom of things more difficult.

c) morally the when and where make no difference. but the when and where do affect how easy it is to investigate and adjudicate the matter. Memories get hazy and more. It's certainly true that many have been harmed by abuse. It is also true that false claims of abuse have ruined people as well. Perfect justice doesn't exist in our world, alas.