Words From the Pastor
Words From the Pastor
Saint Simon the Apostle
I regret that I haven’t been able to write this letter sooner. These past two weeks, my role as the son of my ill mother claimed the front burner in my life.
The recent Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report on six dioceses in Pennsylvania revealing the sexual abuse of minors, and the ways in which it was kept hidden, has weighed heavily on my heart. The details of this report that reviewed the last seventy years is sickening. While I have only read articles about the grand jury report, the report references the failure of Bishops to report the abusers to civil authority prior to 2002, as well as the common practice to transfer priests after a report of abuse was received. I am sorry that this has happened. I am sorry that this may hurt your relationship with your Church. My heart aches for all of the victims and their loved ones who have suffered with them.
My own emotions are many ranging from anger, sadness, disappointment, and confusion as I ponder, “what do we do now?” I can only imagine your own varied and justified feelings and emotions around the recent abuse scandal. I pray for our community, our Church, the many wounded victims, and for God’s wisdom to lead us through healing, transparency, as well as guide the Church to prevent this evil from ever happening again.
How do we go forward? Strong feelings in you might raise questions of disillusionment and distrust of the Church or raise the question of “how can I stay?” Sometimes the Universal Church and the hierarchy of bishops and a pope can seem so large and overwhelming; however the Church is also local. In the midst of this struggle, I invite each of us to find strength and hope in God by looking at the people we sit with or near at Mass or participate within ministries. In our parish community I see daily the power of our faith in action. I see love poured out and witnessed time and time again. I hope and pray that your own experience of priests has been a good and positive one. Please know that Fr. Santhosh and I desire to love and serve our community as we journey with the Lord.
In the Spiritual Exercises, St. Ignatius reminds us that in a time of desolation we shouldn’t make significant or life-altering decisions. Our Church is feeling spiritual desolation from this report. In this time, I encourage each of us take time spent in prayer. Turn to God and lean on each other. May our communal celebration of the true presence of Christ in the Eucharist strengthen you and us as the Body of Christ and a community of faith.
Since the US Bishops met in Dallas in 2002, the Archdiocese of Indianapolis and all other dioceses in the United States have implemented great improvements to safeguard our children. We work hard to provide a safe environment for our children through the
Safe and Sacred
program. If you or someone you know has been abused by a priest, I encourage you to call the Victims Assistance Coordinator for the Archdiocese, Carla Hill, at (317) 236-1548. This number is always printed in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis’ newspaper,
If you wish or need to speak with me know that I am open to doing so.
Sent by Eric Marasco on Saturday, August 25 at 10:00PM