Empowering Survivors to Come Face to Face with the Vicar General

U of S Linden StreetDuring the last week, I have heard from several survivors from the Diocese of Scranton responding to my call for people to come and engage the Vicar General of the Diocese in a forum scheduled for March 5, 2020, by The University of Scranton’s Task Force on Healing, Reconciliation, and Hope.

It looks like there is an interest in attending the event.  I have already made arrangements for time off from my job to make the drive from Virginia to Pennsylvania to add my voice to those who will attempt to question the panel.

The link to the Task Force website bills the title of the evening’s discussion as Diocese of Scranton:  Learning Lessons, Strengthening Safeguards & Empowering Survivors. I am not sure that the Diocese has learned any lessons when it comes to dealing with the criminal acts committed against children and vulnerable adults.  As for strengthening safeguards, the Diocese has become more aggressive in silencing the priests within the Diocese who dare to speak out against the corrupt hierarchy on Wyoming Avenue.  “Empowering survivors”, well, that is a public relations fiction.  The Diocese wants us silenced, isolated, and gone.

Let this be your invitation to attend what is billed to be a forum open to the public in Leahy Hall.  Get there early to get a seat and have your questions ready for the panel.  We are not going to take their prescripted deflections as anything but an attempt to lull the community into the belief that Bishop Bambera and his minions in the Chancery care about survivors.

In the wake of the Diocese of Harrisburg declaring bankruptcy to protect the church’s assets from credible claims by survivors, I would like an assurance from the Diocese of Scranton that they are not about to file bankruptcy for the same reason.

Are you with me?  Will you join me in Scranton on March 5, 2020, in Leahy Hall at 5pm?  Will the Task Force honor their pledge to keep this forum public and allow  “uncomfortable questions to be asked and discussed?”  And most importantly, will Monsignor Muldowney, Kathleen Bolinski, and Mary Beth Pacuska actually show up and take more than a few preplanned, softball questions?  I will be astonished if they show.

Remember, we want a discussion, a conversation.  This is not going to be a confrontation, at least from the side of the survivors.

Monsignor Muldowney, one of your stated job functions is to guide and direct diocesan departments in the implementation of the Diocese’s mission and the priorities of the Bishop.  Are Survivors really a priority?   I am driving eight hours to attend this forum, will you drive eight minutes?

Michael Baumann
The University of Scranton, Class of 1982
Pennsylvania Diocese Victims Report, Page 841

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