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RELIGION: CHRISTIAN: CATHOLIC : BANKRUPTCY: Breaking Legal Documents - Wednesday, February 28, 2007 : San Diego Roman Catholic Diocese Files for Bankruptcy

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  • David P. Dillard
    RELIGION: CHRISTIAN: CATHOLIC : BANKRUPTCY: Breaking Legal Documents - Wednesday, February 28, 2007 : San Diego Roman Catholic Diocese Files for Bankruptcy
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 1, 2007
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      RELIGION: CHRISTIAN: CATHOLIC :
      BANKRUPTCY:
      Breaking Legal Documents -
      Wednesday, February 28, 2007 :
      San Diego Roman Catholic Diocese Files for Bankruptcy


      Date: Wed, 28 Feb 2007 14:09:24 -0800
      From: FindLaw <breakingdocs@...>
      Subject: Breaking Legal Documents - Wednesday, February 28, 2007


      San Diego Roman Catholic Diocese Files for Bankruptcy
      IN RE: ROMAIN CATHOLIC BISHOP OF SAN DIEGO
      February 27, 2007

      The San Diego Roman Catholic Diocese, via its Bishop Robert Brom, files
      for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. In doing so, the Church may avoid
      going to trial in over 140 pending lawsuits brought by plaintiffs charging
      that they are victims of clergy sexual abuse in the Diocese. The Church is
      claiming more than $100 million in assets, and alleging that it has more
      than $100 million in liabilities.

      <http://news.findlaw.com/hdocs/docs/abuse/sdrcd22707ch11.html>


      Marci Hamilton: Why The Filing Is Wrong
      <http://writ.lp.findlaw.com/hamilton/20070222.html>


      San Diego Bishop Robert Brom Uses the Threat of Bankruptcy to Push for a
      Settlement in Consolidated Clergy Child Abuse Cases:
      How the Diocese Is Wrongly Trying to Triangulate A Simple Issue of
      Accountability
      By MARCI HAMILTON
      ----
      Thursday, Feb. 22, 2007


      On Sunday, February 18, Roman Catholic Bishop Robert Brom distributed
      leaflets to the San Diego faithful in the pews. In the leaflets, he tried
      to make the case that the San Diego Diocese could be forced into Chapter
      11 bankruptcy because of the 143 consolidated clergy abuse cases against
      the diocese for the hierarchy's role in the cover up of child abuse. . The
      leaflets tried to cloud the simple issue that the plaintiffs' suits really
      raise -- whether the Diocese and its hierarchy will take responsibility
      for their wrongs to children.

      If the bankruptcy were filed, this would be the fifth U.S. diocese to
      declare bankruptcy. However, in the other four jurisdictions - Tucson, AZ;
      Portland, OR; Spokane, WA; and Davenport, IA-- the declaration of intent
      to file came on the eve of trial. Here, however, the declaration has come
      over a week before the trials are scheduled to begin, on February 28. It
      is thus geared toward setting the tone and context of ongoing pre-trial
      settlement discussions (which Bishop Brom specifically mentions)-
      pressuring plaintiffs to settle lower in order to avoid the inevitable
      delays of a bankruptcy filing.

      <snip>

      The Real Issue: Keeping the Truth from Inhabiting the Public Square

      The leaflets' talk of finances, though, is really just a smokescreen,
      intended to divert the discussion away from what is most important for the
      public, the victims, and the parishioners -- the truth.

      <snip>

      If the trials go forward, the actions that created the conditions for
      serial child abuse will become palpable and real, in all their ugly
      detail, for all to see. It is one thing to read of the stories in the
      newspaper, or to hear about them second-hand. It is another to hear them
      from the mouths of those who were in power and created the conditions for
      child predators to prey on children. The message will extend well beyond
      those leafleted last Sunday to the local and national community.
      Doubtless, the fear of that public spectacle is what moves the hierarchy
      to grab for any available delay, no matter the financial cost, the further
      toll taken on victims, or the moral bankruptcy of grasping for cover
      rather than genuine remorse.



      ----------------------------------------


      The complete article may be read at the URL above.



      Sincerely,
      David Dillard
      Temple University
      (215) 204 - 4584
      jwne@...
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