Sun-Times religion writer Susan Hogan/Albach reprises her rundown on how Chicago churchmen prospered in the wake of the Rev. Daniel McCormack scandal in this (farewell) blog. She did well in her short time at that newspaper, now being axed beyond recognition in paroxysms of budget-cutting.
Two years ago this month, the Rev. Daniel McCormack was arrested for molesting boys. He’s in prison now. And the top leaders in the Archdiocese of Chicago who might have stopped him have risen in their church positions.
* Cardinal George, elected president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops four months after McCormack pleaded guilty and went to jail
* George Rassas, made an auxiliary bishop a few weeks after McCormack’s 2006 arrest following his 2005 arrest and subsequent further molestation of children while remaining a pastor
* Chancellor Jimmy Lago, who kept his job throughout the McCormack sequence, while overseeing offices that handle sexual abuse, claiming ignorance.
* Rev. John Canary, seminary vice rector in 1992 when sexual accusations were made against McCormack involving two adult males and a minor starting in 1988, later seminary rector and in 2006 appointed vicar general, replacing Rassas when he was made a bishop
* Bishop Gerald Kicanas, seminary rector during McCormack’s years who knew of “sexual improprieties” reported about him but said, “It would have been grossly unfair not to have ordained him” and became a bishop in 1995, a year after McCormack’s ordination, in 2001 being given his own diocese (Tucson) and being elected vice president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops two months ago, with presumed right of succession to the presidency now held by Cardinal George.
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