LAST-DITCH ATTEMPT TO SMEAR BISHOP MURPHY

Catalyst March Issue 2004

Laura A. Ahearn held a press conference on February 11 in Stony Brook, Long Island, the purpose of which was to charge Rockville Centre Bishop William F. Murphy of conspiring to squash a criminal investigation of child sexual abuse. Ahearn, director of Parents for Megan’s Law, says she spent a week in Boston researching Bishop Murphy’s role in the Boston sex abuse scandal. She claims to have evidence of his wrongdoing while serving in Boston.

Catholic League president William Donohue wasn’t impressed:

“Laura A. Ahearn postures herself as a tireless champion of children whose only motive is justice. No doubt the social worker has done some good work. But her resume also has all the marks of a zealot.

“It did not sit well with Ahearn when the Diocese of Rockville Centre did not award her a contract for her workshops. More important, Ahearn previously scoffed at the Church’s claim that certain reporting laws would compromise the confessional. Also telling is her unwillingness to cite the role homosexuals have played in the scandal. Now anyone who treats the sanctity of the confessional in a cavalier fashion is no friend of the Catholic Church. Moreover, anyone who maintains that homosexuals did not play a major role in the scandal is living in utter denial.

“It is striking that the report issued by Massachusetts Attorney General Thomas Reilly on the Boston Archdiocese didn’t lay a glove on Bishop Murphy. We are now to believe that a woman from Long Island, armed with her masters in social work, has found evidence of Murphy’s culpability that escaped the army of lawyers working for the Massachusetts Attorney General. And it only took her a week to do so!

      “When Ahearn addresses her friends in Voice of the Faithful on February 12, she will find a sympathetic audience. But unless she is really living in la-la-land, she should not expect most Catholics to pay her any heed. It’s time Ahearn, and everyone else out to get Murphy, packed it in.”

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Written by Bill