By Brendan O’Brien
(Reuters) – The New York Archdiocese, one of the largest in the United States, on Friday identified 120 former Roman Catholic bishops, priests and deacons who were accused of sexually abusing children.
The archdiocese was the latest in the United States to publicly list the names of former clergy members accused of abuse as the church faces state and federal investigations into its handling of decades of allegations of sexual misconduct by priests.
“I write to ask forgiveness again for the failings of those clergy and bishops who should have provided for the safety of our young people but instead betrayed the trust placed in them by God and by the faithful,” Timothy Cardinal Dolan, archbishop of New York, said in a statement.
The archdiocese released the name of each accused clergy member, the year he was ordained and whether he had been removed from the ministry. It also consisted of the year that he died if he was deceased. The list did not contain information about the accusations that the clergy member faced.
A review board has been created to help determine whether allegations of sexual abuse are credible and substantiated and whether accused clergy should be removed from ministry as a result, the archdiocese said.
In January, Roman Catholic leaders in Texas made a similar disclosure as they identified around 300 priests and others. A month later, five Roman Catholic dioceses in New Jersey released the names of 188 clergy members who have been accused of sexually abusing children dating back decades.
(Reporting by Brendan O’Brien in Milwaukee; Editing by Alistair Bell)