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. ••
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