Catholic League president William Donohue issued the following news release regarding Bishop William F. Murphy of Rockville Centre:
“The decision by Voice of the Faithful demanding that Bishop Murphy resign has now ignited a battle with the Catholic League. We will now commence a petition drive in support of Bishop Murphy that will settle the issue of who really speaks for Long Island Catholics. The Catholic League has approximately 15,000 members in Nassau and Suffolk, a number that represents half of Voice of the Faithful’s numbers nationwide.
“The report issued by Massachusetts Attorney General Thomas Reilly was specific regarding the culpability of some bishops who worked in the Boston Archdiocese. Not included in that list is Bishop Murphy. Less than two pages of the report even mention Bishop Murphy and the worst that can be said about him is that he ‘supervised’ the infamous John Geoghan. What the report did not say is that Bishop Murphy supervised his dismissal from ministry and ultimately from the priesthood. Not mentioning this smacks of corruption.
“No one has ever charged Bishop Murphy with moving molesting priests from parish to parish or anything like that. That is why the report has nothing incriminating to say about him. If, in fact, he were guilty, the Catholic League would not defend him.
“It is tempting for activist organizations that are angry at the Church to steamroll their way to justice. But justice demands that innocent people not be run over. This is what is happening to Bishop Murphy. Just because he served in Boston he is considered, ipso facto, guilty. This represents a collapse of discernment that is despicable.
“Voice of the Faithful will not succeed in its demagogic attempt to silence Bishop Murphy. They are in over their heads on this one.”