WASHINGTON (February 15, 2002) -- A description of two decades of efforts by the nation's Catholic bishops to address the problem of sex abuse in the Church and to assist those who have been affected by it is now available on the Web site of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB).
"The purpose of the site is to provide a comprehensive and readily accessible resource on this topic to those who are interested in knowing what has transpired," said Msgr. Francis Maniscalco, USCCB Secretary for Communications and staff to the Bishops' Ad Hoc Committee on Sexual Abuse. "There has been a dramatic improvement in the handling of these cases, a fact which many in the media have insufficiently recognized," he said.
The site, Restoring Trust: A Response to Sexual Abuse, has an opinion piece by USCCB President Bishop Wilton D. Gregory, which appeared in USA Today on February 13, and an opinion piece by Bishop John F. Kinney, past Chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee on Sexual Abuse. It contains To Combat Clergy Sexual Abuse Against Minors, a chronological history of the work done by the Committee from 1982 to 1997; Diocesan Policies; The Five Principles to Follow Regarding Allegations of Sexual Abuse; and an interview with Frederick Berlin, MD, of Johns Hopkins University.
Also on the Web page is Walk in the Light: Pastoral Response to Child Sexual Abuse, a statement by the Bishops' Committee on Women in Society and in the Church and the Bishops' Committee on Marriage and the Family.
Restoring Trust can be found at www.usccb.org/comm/restoretrust.shtml.