California News

Feb 1, 2013 8:23 AM by ASSOCIATED PRESS

Reaction to Mahony decision and release of files

LOS ANGELES (AP) - The following is a sampling of the reaction to the release Thursday evening of thousands of pages of personnel files of priests accused of child molestation, and of Archbishop Jose Gomez's decision to strip Retired Cardinal Roger Mahony of his duties:

- Los Angeles archdiocese: The files' release "concludes a sad and shameful chapter in the history of our local church."

- Archbishop Jose Gomez: "I find these files to be brutal and painful reading. The behavior described in these files is terribly sad and evil. There is no excuse, no explaining away what happened to these children."

- Rev. Thomas Reese, a Jesuit and senior fellow at the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University: "It's quite extraordinary. I don't think anything like this has happened before. It's showing that there are consequences now to mismanaging the sex abuse crisis."

- Terry McKiernan, founder of, which tracks the release of priest files nationally: The reprimand is a "purely symbolic punishment that they hope will satisfy at least some people in the archdiocese. I don't think that many savvy observers of this will be deceived."

- David Clohessy, national director of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP): "Hand-slapping Cardinal Roger Mahony is a nearly meaningless gesture. When he had real power, and abused it horribly, he should have been demoted or disciplined by the church hierarchy, in Rome and in the U.S. But not a single Catholic cleric anywhere had the courage to even denounce him. Shame on them."

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