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Bishop Barry C. Knestout Statement Following the Close of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Public Sessions at the 2018 Fall General Assembly in Baltimore

For Immediate Release: November 19, 2018

Bishop Barry C. Knestout attends the USCCB 2018 Fall General Assembly, Nov. 12-14, in Baltimore. (CNS photo/Bob Roller)

“The Church has no greater charge than the protection of children. I am hopeful that, despite our not acting upon specific measures related to the abuse scandal, the discussions which took place during the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops about bishops’ accountability regarding clergy sexual abuse will be the foundation for concrete action — not only for the Church in the United States, but for the Church universal.

Child protection is not only a parish, diocesan and national concern in our Church, but it is a concern for the Church throughout the world. So, when our Holy Father meets with the presidents of bishops’ conferences in February, they will be looking at protecting ALL children and making ALL bishops accountable for what they do in this regard.

Be assured we are continuing to move forward with the commitment I made to the faithful of our diocese in September:

  • to make public the names of those priests from our diocese who received credible and substantiated allegations of abuse;
  • to have a full, extensive audit of clergy files by an independent entity, with oversight from the Diocesan Review Board, which will hold us accountable; and
  • to establish an abuse victims’ assistance fund for counseling aid to those who have experienced abuse from clergy.

Please continue to pray for victims of abuse and for our Church as we heal and work unceasingly to answer the call for reform and renewal and to prevent such a scourge from ever occurring again.”

Read the President of the U.S.C.C.B Statement Following the Close of the Fall General Session in Baltimore Nov. 12-14.