In the next four months, all 15 Catholic dioceses in Texas will release names of clergy who have been credibly accused of sexually abusing a minor. The lists will include information dating back to at least 1950, according to a statement released Wednesday by The Texas Catholic Conference of Bishops.
The bishops’ decision was made in the context of their ongoing work to protect children from sexual abuse, and their efforts to promote healing and a restoration of trust in the Catholic Church. TCCB said the decision to release names was made on September 30, but wasn't announced until nearly two weeks later.
With 8.5 million Catholics and 1,320 Catholic parishes in Texas, the endeavor to compile a comprehensive list of clergy who have been credibly accused of sexually abusing a minor represents a major project, TCCB said. All dioceses will publish their lists by January 31, 2019.
“It will take some time for files to be reviewed, and there may be people who come forward with new information following this announcement. My brother bishops in Texas and I agree that transparency in this painful matter of sexual abuse can assist with healing for survivors and transformation for our Church,” Archbishop Gustavo García-Siller, MSpS of San Antonio said.
The release of names of clergy credibly accused of sexually abusing a minor is part of an ongoing effort by the dioceses to provide an even safer environment for children. These lists will be updated as new information becomes available. Each bishop will be releasing his own statement and list, TCCB said.
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