Editorial: The sins of the Fathers

As Monsignor Wil­li­am Lynn awaits a Com­mon Pleas Court judge’s de­cision on wheth­er he will get out of jail and spend some time as a free man at home un­til he is sen­tenced in Au­gust for his role in the clergy sexu­al-ab­use fiasco, he should thank his lucky stars, and The Man Up­stairs, that he was al­lowed to get away with his sins as long as he did. They were the sins of omis­sion and ig­nor­ance.
Upon his con­vic­tion Fri­day of one count of en­dan­ger­ing chil­dren, Lynn of­fi­cially be­came an en­a­bler in the clergy ab­use scan­dal. Al­though he has not been ac­cused of en­ga­ging in sexu­al activ­ity with chil­dren, he earned a tre­mend­ous amount of blame, for he al­lowed per­ver­ted priests to re­main in the pres­ence of chil­dren. He is the first of­fi­cial of the na­tion’s Ro­man Cath­ol­ic Church to be con­victed in a sex-ab­use case, and there should be hell to pay for that.
Lynn faces a max­im­um of sev­en years in pris­on when he is sen­tenced on Aug. 13, but he likely will get much, much less, and that, it­self, is a sin. Judge M. Teresa Sarmina hope­fully will throw the book at him, and if there is justice, Dis­trict At­tor­ney Seth Wil­li­ams will retry Lynn’s co-de­fend­ant, the Rev. James Bren­nan, who was the be­ne­fi­ciary of a jury that was dead­locked on charges of at­temp­ted rape and child en­dan­ger­ment.
The con­spir­acy of si­lence from high-rank­ing of­fi­cials in the church is as de­bil­it­at­ing as the dis­gust­ing, sick acts that Penn State’s former as­sist­ant foot­ball coach Jerry San­dusky was con­victed of the same day.
Let all Cath­ol­ics and non-Cath­ol­ics be on no­tice: The days of see no evil, hear no evil, re­port no evil are over. If you have a heart and/or a soul and you see or know of a child get­ting sexu­ally ab­used, you MUST re­port the evil act to the po­lice. ••
Send let­ters to the ed­it­or to: pronews@bsmphilly.com

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