Jimmy Akin follows up:
There is more to say about the story. Quite a bit, actually. In particular, I’ll be responding to Sullivan, and I’ll be able to report on the German story, but first there are some additional facts to get on the table regarding the Wisconsin one.
Let’s start with a piece by Fr. Thomas Brundage (pictured), who writes:
I was the Judicial Vicar for the Archdiocese of Milwaukee from 1995-2003. During those years, I presided over four canonical criminal cases, one of which involved Father Lawrence Murphy. Two of the four men died during the process.
Interesting that Brundage says two of the four men died during the process. Contrary to what you would think from press reports, Murphy appears to be one of the two, given what shortly will become clear.
In any event, a 50% death rate seems to indicate aggressive prosecution of men even when they are quite old or in ill health. So already a picture is forming of Brundage as presiding over a vigorous court.
He has not been pleased with the New York Times’ (and other outlets’) reportage on the Murphy case:
As I have found that the reporting on this issue has been inaccurate and poor in terms of the facts, I am also writing from a sense of duty to the truth.
The fact that I presided over this trial and have never once been contacted by any news organization for comment speaks for itself.
In 1996, I was introduced to the story of Father Murphy, formerly the principal of St. John’s School for the Deaf in Milwaukee. It had been common knowledge for decades that during Father Murphy’s tenure at the school (1950-1974) there had been a scandal at St. John’s involving him and some deaf children. The details, however, were sketchy at best.
Courageous advocacy on behalf of the victims (and often their wives), led the Archdiocese of Milwaukee to revisit the matter in 1996.
“Courageous advocacy” suggests that there was a struggle requiring courage to get the Archdiocese of Milwaukee to act, presumably this involved the argument that Fr. Murphy’s crimes were committed long ago and that he was no longer in the diocese. Nevertheless . . . Continue reading