Blog Archives

PRESS RELEASE Bevilacqua strikes from the grave


PRESS RELEASE Bevilacqua strikes from the grave
Mike Ference

Mike Ference

 

I sent this out on April 14, 2013. Bishop Zubik still gets a free pass from DA Stevie Blunder Zappala. The Pittsburgh Diocese simply does not have to account for their crimes. Please consider passing this forward.

PRESS RELEASE

Bevilacqua strikes from the grave

Pittsburgh , PA — April 14, 2013 — Since the start of the year, hardly a week goes by where Father Ron Lenguin doesn’t have to explain the sexual shenanigans of another Catholic priest or cleric from the Pittsburgh Diocese. Here it is, early April and the accusations are coming almost every other day.

The newest allegation for Lenguin to address dates back to the time of Bishop Anthony Bevilacqua’s tenure as leader of the Pittsburgh Diocese. For now, the survivor chooses to remain anonymous.

Here’s what we know. John Doe met with a detective from the Northern Regional Police Department in Allegheny County (724-625-3157) on March 21, 2013 at 11:00 am. John Doe made a statement which should have been turned over to Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala, Jr. for further review and possible investigation.

The alleged abuse occurred approximately from early 1986 to mid 1987. Father John (Jack) Connor was named in the complaint. St. Alphonsus in Wexford , PA is the parish where Father Connor was serving at the time of the alleged assault.

Father Connor, an admitted child molester served in the Pittsburgh Diocese from 1985 to 1987. Originally from the diocese of Camden , NJ , Connor came to Pittsburgh with the blessing of Bevilacqua. It was to help his close friend, Bishop George H. Guilfoyle of Camden . Keeping Connor in New Jersey could lead to more scandals and a probable law suit by one of Connor’s victims.

It’s called a “tradition of bishops helping bishops.” Some call it “passing the trash.”

During his term in the Pittsburgh Diocese, Connor was assigned as a hospital chaplain, possibly Sewickley Hospital , St. Alphonsus Parish in Wexford and St. James Parish also in Sewickley.

For more information on Father John Connor visit Bishop-Accountability:http://www.bishopaccountability.org/reports/2005_09_21_Philly_GrandJury/Philly_05_08_Connor.pdf

Parishioners notified about priest sex abuse allegation


Parishioners notified about priest sex abuse allegation

Victim was 10 during alleged abuse by priest at St. James Church in Wilkinsburg

By Shannon Perrine  6:56 PM EDT Apr 08, 2013

From the link: http://www.wtae.com/news/local/allegheny/Parishioners-notified-about-priest-sex-abuse-allegation/-/10927008/19662742/-/khlgug/-/index.html

Parishioners at St. James Church in Wilkinsburg received a letter in the mail from the diocese informing them of the allegation, which is said to have occurred between 1981 and 1985.  Parishioner Jim Ruck said, “It’s sad and especially for people in positions of trust to abuse that trust, that’s horrendous.”

Mike Ference, a local advocate for victims of sex abuse by priests, said the alleged victim is a man in his 40s who recently died.

Ference said the man’s family came to him and told him that the alleged victim divulged detailed accounts of the abuse in the months before he died.  Ference said, “The man started to talk about it and a few months later he passed away.”

The abuse, they said, began when the alleged victim was about 10 years old.

Ference said the family members reported to him that the priest accused of abusing the child was the Rev. John J. Wellinger, who served at the church during that time period.

Wellinger died in 2011 and had not served as a priest publicly since 1995. He had been connected to other charges of sex abuse in the past.

Diocesan spokesman, the Rev. Ron Lengwin, said, “In terms of the fact that we thought the previous one was credible, then you would tend to think that there could certainly be credibility here.  And we’ve never really had many allegations that were not credible.”

Pittsburgh Catholic Bishop David Zubik wrote the letter to parishioners at St. James Parish. He asked that any other possible victims of Wellinger call the diocesan victim’s assistance hotline at 888-808-12135 or the state abuse hotline at 800-932-0313.