Jun 5, 2014

Pope Francis Could Order Listecki to Open Archdiocese of Milwaukee Operation to Its Victims

U.S. Senator (R-Wisconsin), Ron
Wisconsin Child Victims Bill
legal protection
against Predator Priests
Update: See also piece on the now-retired Twin Cities Archbishop Harry Flynn, " one-time head of the US bishops child sex abuse panel called police about admitted, proven or credibly accused predator priests."
One would believe that children raped and molested is a horrendous crime that both major political parties would agree merits holding the perpetrators to account and pay the victims restitution, such as restitution can be.

Not in this life.

The Catholic Church hierarchy is maintaining its hostile stance towards rape and molestation victims, knowing the Republican Party [see Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson and his work against rape victims for example] and judges such as Rudolph Randa have the church's back as both operations inflict a shared misogyny and absolute prohibition against a woman's right to choose what to do with her body.

If anyone needs to see more evidence that the Republican Party and the Catholic Church hierarchy have fallen deep into nihilism and organized criminality, the latest out of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee should awaken decent Americans.

In the federal case, Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors v. Listecki, a three-judge panel of the Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit questioned attorneys this week for defending a $60 million cemetery trust fund crafted by New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan when he was the archbishop of Milwaukee to shield money from victims of priests in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee.

A federal bankruptcy judge ruled in January 2013 that efforts by Listecki to insulate the $60 million from victims did not, as the church claims, violate "the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 ... and the First Amendment." [Case No. 11-20059-svk, Chapter 11, Adv. Proc. No. 11-02459  UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF WISCONSIN
485 B.R. 385; 2013 Bankr. LEXIS 200; 57 Bankr. Ct. Dec. 119]

Judge Rudolph Randa disagreed and overruled the federal bankruptcy judge in defense of  Listecki in July 2013.

Randa's decision, a corrupt decision, drew derisive criticism across the nation from survivors and their advocates. (Goodstein, NYT)

Writes Goodstein:
The ruling reversed an earlier decision by a federal bankruptcy judge and was a victory for Archbishop Jerome E. Listecki of Milwaukee, and for his predecessor, Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan, now the archbishop of New York, who established the cemetery trust in Milwaukee in 2007. Documents made public in July revealed that when Cardinal Dolan sought the Vatican’s permission to move nearly $57 million into a cemetery trust, he said it would help protect the money from legal claims.
This week a panel of the Court of Appeal for the Seventh Circuit excoriated the machinations of the slippery church and its defenders such as Randa and questioned Randa's conflict of interest, calling it "troubling."

Randa won't lose any sleep over the accusation.

As reported by Annysa Johnson of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel:

Judges at the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday appeared to challenge a key argument in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee's efforts to protect $60 million it holds in a trust for the care of cemeteries from being used to pay creditors in its bankruptcy.

The three-judge panel questioned whether the archdiocese needs that entire $60 million to maintain its cemeteries. And one of the jurists, 7th Circuit Judge Ann Claire Williams, said she found issues related to U.S. District Judge Rudolph T. Randa's decision not to recuse himself from the lawsuit over those funds 'troubling.'

The panel — Appellate Judges Williams and Joel Flaum, along with U.S. District Judge Robert Dow of the Northern District of Illinois — heard oral arguments Monday on several issues related to the bankruptcy, including First Amendment questions that could be of national significance as religious liberty cases make their way through courts around the country.

In that lawsuit, filed by Archbishop Jerome Listecki as sole trustee of the cemetery trust, the church maintains that forcing it to turn over even $1 in cemetery funds to the bankruptcy estate would substantially burden its free exercise of religion under the First Amendment and the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act. Proceeds from the estate would go to finance a settlement with sex abuse victims and the archdiocese's reorganization.
Randa is more than troubling.

And Pope Francis could settle this matter in a Vatican minute, if his conversion to decency and humanism were more than a slick PR job.

Lay Catholics face a decision on what to do about the Catholic Church hierarchy, a historic decision.
SNAP - Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

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