Last week, four men dropped their initial lawsuit against the Catholic Diocese of Santa Rosa alleging sexual abuse by one of its priests, Patrick McCabe, in order to file an expanded suit that includes the Archdiocese of Dublin and the Servants of the Paraclete, a religious ministry that treated McCabe for pedophilia.
McCabe is being held in Alameda County’s Santa Rita jail, where he awaits extradition to Ireland on charges of sexually assaulting underage males there.
Last week, Greg Horne, one of the men behind the lawsuit who says he was sexually abused by McCabe, talked to KQED’s Stephanie Martin about the case.
“I don’t think there’s a phase of my life that hasn’t been touched” by the abuse, he said. “I’m concerned and I’m saddened that a human being, a servant of god, would put Father McCabe in the position to allow him to hurt children. In some ways, he was victimized as well. I don’t think there’s anyone could ever have thought he was ever going to be any different. He had a pattern of behavior and they just allowed him to continue that and he did nothing to prevent that.”
“The most insidious part of this type of crime is (that) if you’re a victim you feel one way….but if you never saw that side, you wouldn’t think any different. So to some he might be the best priest they ever saw, but for an entire other population of people, he was their worst nightmare. Which is why you see such a divide when this topic comes up.”
Stephanie Martin also talked with Adrienne Moran, a lawyer for the Santa Rosa Diocese, who said the men’s claim is barred because the statute of limitations has run out, and that there is no evidence of prior knowledge of any claims of sexual abuse by Diocesan officials.
You can also read a chapter about the McCabe case taken from Ireland’s Murphy Report on BishopAccountability.org. The Murphy Report was commissioned by the Government of Ireland to investigate the handling of the sexual abuse scandal in that country by the Catholic Church.