St. Murphy the Sexual Abuser of Deaf Children
NEW YORK — Milwaukee’s Roman Catholic archbishop warned a top Vatican office led by future Pope Benedict XVI about a priest who may have molested as many as 200 deaf boys, according to documents obtained by The New York Times, but the priest never was defrocked.
The documents were provided by two lawyers who have filed lawsuits alleging the Archdiocese of Milwaukee didn’t take sufficient action against the Rev. Lawrence Murphy. The priest, who died in 1998, worked at the former St. John’s School for the Deaf in St. Francis from 1950 to 1975.
In 1996, then-Milwaukee Archbishop Rembert G. Weakland sent letters about Murphy to the Vatican office called the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which was led from 1981 to 2005 by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the future pope. Weakland received no response from Ratzinger, the Times reported.
Eight months later, the second in command at the doctrinal office, Cardinal Tarciscio Bertone — now the Vatican’s secretary of state — told the Wisconsin bishops to begin secret disciplinary proceedings, according to the documents. But Bertone halted that process after Murphy wrote to Ratzinger saying he already had repented, was ailing and that the case’s statute of limitations had run out, the Times reported.
The documents contain no response from Cardinal Ratzinger. – More here.