In April 2002, the US cardinals traveled to the Vatican at height of the Scandal breaking, and returned with a statement that said, among things, that there should be an immediate and thorough apostolic visitation of US seminaries, ostensibly to determine why so many perverts had been able to pass through their doors and get ordained. We’re still waiting for that visitation.
Meanwhile, the furor over homosexual activity and child porn at an Austrian seminary has been going on for less than a month and already the Vatican has dispatched a special apostolic visitator. So why the difference? Maybe it’s the photos of seminarians and priests grabbing each other and French kissing, but we haven’t had the same visual evidence coming out of US seminaries. Maybe it’s that the Austrian bishops demanded it, while the US bishops have been slow to ask for their seminaries to be put under the microscope.
Whatever the case, I think it’s high time the Pope appoint an apostolic visitator to examine US seminaries, preferably not an American bishop.