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February 20, 2005

67 clergy abuse complaints reported in '04

February 21, 2005 [Boston Globe] By Donovan Slack

The Catholic Archdiocese of Boston fielded 67 new complaints last year of sexual abuse by clergy, including one alleging abuse within the past 12 months, according to an archdiocese statement.

The allegations were made against 40 diocesan priests or deacons and 16 priests from religious orders, the statement said.

The bulk of the complaints involved alleged abuse in 1995 or earlier.

Results of the first annual survey of clergy abuse allegations and costs, conducted by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University, were released Friday by the US Conference of Catholic Bishops.

The Boston Archdiocese spent $5 million on settlements of abuse claims and about $1 million on treatment of victims and their families, the statement from the archdiocese said.

It spent $740,000 on child protection initiatives, including training.

Since the sexual abuse scandal became public three years ago, the archdiocese said it has trained between 30,000 and 40,000 children in how to respond to abusive situations, and it has conducted approximately 60,000 criminal background checks on priests, staff members, and volunteers.

Nationally, 1,048 people came forward in 2004 to say they had been sexually abused by a priest or deacon, the audit shows, and American dioceses spent $157 million last year on abuse-related costs, including legal settlements. The Vatican defrocked 148 priests in 2004

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