Editorial

Things to watch in 2019: Catholic Church reckoning

Taos News editorial team
Posted 1/11/19

Last year, New Mexico faced its history of Catholic priests sexual abuse in two major ways: the attorney general launched a sweeping investigation...

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Editorial

Things to watch in 2019: Catholic Church reckoning

Posted

Last year, New Mexico faced its history of Catholic priests sexual abuse in two major ways: the attorney general launched a sweeping investigation into the Archdiocese of Santa Fe, and in short order, the archdiocese filed for bankruptcy. After more than two decades of slow-burning justice and healing, 2019 promises a storm of a reckoning.

The church is cooperating with the attorney general’s investigation, which will likely lead to a more comprehensive account of what type and extent of abuse took place in New Mexico throughout the 20th century. Archbishop John C. Wester, shown here praying with a group gathered in 2018 outside the state capital, has said he’s committed to working with the state and victims. 

As for the bankruptcy proceedings, the first half of 2019 will mean a chance for potential claimants to come forward. The church has promised to communicate with the public throughout the financial restructuring. They even have a page on their website dedicated to it: archdiosf.org/reorganization.

At the same time, the sexual abuse crisis is also rattling the very top echelon of the Catholic Church in Rome and among bishops in the United States. Changes to the largest religious organization in the world in 2019 is already coming from all directions: from the inside, from states like New Mexico, and from victims who demand justice.

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