New York’s Cardinal Edward Egan will be required to give a deposition in civil lawsuit against his former diocese of Bridgeport, Conn. The only other cardinals to be forced to give such depositions are Cardinals Bernard Law and Roger Mahony. This is a good thing. Whenever bishops have been forced to testify under oath we have been granted a better understanding of the Scandal, what precipitated it, and the warped mindset that allowed it to fester. Perjury laws, a plaintiffs’ attorney, and a court reporter have done more to expose the rot in the Church than all the new offices, internal investigations, audits, and new policies the bishops’ conference has been able to come up with.
“The longer bishops and cardinals hide facts and secrets the more it hurts,” said Landa Mauriello-Vernon, state director of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests. “Thank God people aren’t awed by the position any more.”
It may be hard to dispute what she says, but it still saddens me. We should be awed by the office of the bishop and cardinal, but the way it has been abused by most of their current holders, it’s not surprising it isn’t.