Attorney William McMurry, who sued the Holy See for being complicit in the sexual abuse of his three clients, is seeking to end the lawsuit; similar suits are still pending. McMurry won a settlement from the Archdiocese of Louisville in 2003 for $25.7 million.

Catholic League president Bill Donohue addressed this issue today:

McMurry acknowledges that “Virtually every child who was abused and will come forward as an adult has come forward and sued a bishop and collected money, and once that happens, it’s over.” That’s right—once they got their check, they cashed out. But not McMurry: his motives were more primordial. Which is why he continued.

What collapsed yesterday was the heart and soul of McMurry’s interest: his attempt to put Pope Benedict XVI on trial. It was his objective to hold men in Rome accountable for the behavior of men in Louisville, simply because they all worked for the same organization. McMurry knew this was a high bar to clear—proving culpability on the part of the Holy See for what goes on in Kentucky—and so he decided it was a futile exercise.

There was one other reason why McMurry quit: he couldn’t find any more alleged victims. But it was not for lack of trying. He admits he searched in vain for months looking to find any man who may have been groped. “No one who has not sued a bishop is in a position to help us despite our best efforts over the past several months,” McMurry said.

Just think about it. Every day, for the past several months, William McMurry and his colleagues went to work in hot pursuit of finding some adult man who may have settled out of court. It did not matter how trivial the offense, how many decades ago it occurred, or how old the alleged victim was, all that mattered was that the offender had to be a priest. No minister, rabbi, school teacher, coach, counselor or psychologist would do. And now the gig is up.

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