Prominent priest, Rev. Benedict Groeschel, blames sex victims, says first-time abusers shouldn’t face jail

David Gibson and Daniel Burke |

NEW YORK (RNS) The Rev. Benedict Groeschel, a prominent author and speaker who is especially popular with conservative Catholics and bishops, has sparked outrage by saying that priests who sexually abuse children “on their first offense” should not go to jail. He added that in “a lot of cases” the child is “the seducer.” By David Gibson and Daniel Burke.

Philly archbishop clears 3 priests, removes 5 others

(RNS) Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput said Friday that five priests accused of sexually abusing children last year would be barred from ministry and could be defrocked, while three others were cleared by a church-led investigation and could return to pastoral work. By David Gibson.