UNSEEMLY ATTACK ON ARCHBISHOP DOLAN
Catalyst April Issue 2011
Recently we came to the defense of New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan after lawyer Jeffrey Anderson alleged that he hid money while in charge of the Milwaukee Archdiocese.
Anderson, who has made a killing suing the Catholic Church, was angry there isn’t more money in the Milwaukee Archdiocese for him to milk. So he pointed his finger at the one Milwaukee archbishop who did more to render justice than any of his predecessors, Timothy Dolan (he headed the Milwaukee Archdiocese from 2002-2009).
Anderson wanted to know why the Milwaukee Archdiocese moved $75 million to the parishes in 2004. Because it was held as an investment account for the parishes (not archdiocesan money) and was returned to them at the request of its auditors and lay finance council. That’s why. If this is illegal, then Anderson would need an army of lawyers: huge transfers of funds take place every day in religious and secular institutions. Only those with base motives just assume wrongdoing.
Anderson also wants to know why $55 million was moved to a cemetery trust in 2008, a year after a Wisconsin court said victims could sue for fraud. Actually, the cemetery transfer took place in 2007, and was entirely consistent with previous practices: the cemetery trust existed, de facto, since the early 1900s but was not formalized until 2007.
Assisting Anderson in this witch hunt was Los Angeles lawyer, Gillian Brown. She is cut from the same cloth: she recently got so out of hand in her rambling attacks against the archdiocese that presiding Assistant U.S. Trustee, David Asbach, had to put the arm on her. As if we needed any further proof of the vindictiveness at play, Brown asked about the monetary value of the bishops’ rings and crosses. This is exactly the kind of shakedown we would expect from the likes of Anderson and Brown.
SNAP, the professional victims’ group, once again was salivating. And no wonder: their latest 990 tax return shows they’re in big trouble—their revenues are plummeting and they’re operating in the red. So they badly need Anderson to grease them again. They are incapable of being shamed.