C. John McCloskey: Opus Dei has paid $ 977,000 to settle the claim of sexual misconduct against prominent Catholic priests

C. John McCloskey: Opus Dei has paid $ 977,000 to settle the claim of sexual misconduct against prominent Catholic priests

Father John McCloskey of the Catholic Information Center, speaks in 2002 with a priest at the University of Notre Dame, not pictured, about sex scandals within the Catholic Church at NBC's "Meet the Press" in Washington. (Alex Wong / Getty Images) In 2005, the global Catholic community Opus Dei paid $ 977,000 to settle a costume for sexual misconduct with the Reverend C. John McCloskey, a priest famous for preparing for the conversion of conservatives from big names – Newt Gingrich, Larry Kudlow and Sam Brownback, among others. The woman who filed the complaint is Catholic Catholic from the DC and belonged to the many who received spiritual guidance from McCloskey through the Catholic Information Center, a hub in the K-Street of Catholic life in downtown Washington. She told The Washington Post that McCloskey had touched her several times while she was going to hold pastoral counseling with him to talk about marital problems and severe depression. The guilt and shame about the interactions put her in a downward spiral and, combined with her existing depression, made her unable to work in her high-level job, she said. She talked to him about her "misperceived guilt about the interaction" during confession and he fired her, she said. "I love Opus Dei, but I was entangled in this coverup – I went to confession and thought I was doing something to tempt this holy man to cross boundaries," she said. The Post does not call victims of sexual violence without their consent. The announcement of the complaint and the settlement was only announced on Monday by Opus Dei, but behind the scenes the ministry of the famous priest was sharply restricted. Many Catholics in Washington have wondered for years what happened to McCloskey, who came closest to a celebrity who had the Catholic Church in the region. Another woman told Opus Dei that "she felt uncomfortable by the way he hugged her," said Brian Finnerty, a spokesman for Opus Dei, Monday night. He said that Opus Dei is also investigating a third claim – so far unproven – that he is potentially & # 39; serious & # 39; called. He refused to provide details, but said that the woman & # 39; possibly also became the victim of misconduct by Father McCloskey & # 39; in the DC center, that is a bookstore, a chapel and a meeting place for conservative Catholics in particular. In a statement, Opus Dei Vicar, Monsignor Thomas Bohlin, said that McCloskey's actions in the center were "very painful for the woman" who made the first complaint "and we are very sorry for everything she has suffered." [The Vatican’s investigation into Theodore McCarrick’s alleged crimes is underway] Bohlin's statement, which came after the woman had requested to make Opus Dei public in an attempt to reach other potential victims, said McCloskey was removed from his job in the center a year after the complaint, when it proved to be credible. "All intimidation and abuse are repulsive," wrote Bohlin. "I am painfully aware of everything that the Church suffers, and I am very sorry that we have added it in Opus Dei Let us ask God to show mercy to all of us in the Church during this difficult time." from Washington after the complaints, McCloskey was sent to England and then to Chicago and California for orders at Opus Dei. The woman in the settlement said the ecclesiastical officials in Chicago had told her that he would not give McCloskey permission to get "faculties" -or permission to function fully as a priest-and would be held on a tight line. She was worried last year when she came in contact with someone else who knew McCloskey and heard that he might have worked as a priest in California. In Monday's statement, Opus Dei said that after the settlement McCloskey was told that he only gave spiritual guidance to women in the confessional, meaning they were physically separated from them. In Opus Dei, a traditional community of Catholics, that is the norm for priests who work with those who accompany them. McCloskey had an unusually public, free role at the information center. In interviews in 2014, McCloskey was identified as working in "spiritual guidance and pastoral ministry." In a 2014 piece for the Jesuit magazine America, he said he was a spiritual adviser & # 39; used to be. As a result, the woman said in the settlement: a lack of clarity about McCloskey's role has haunted her all these years and she wants to make sure that all the other women who may have been harmed by the priest know that she is not being alone and being able to get help. McCloskey, now in his sixties, recently returned to the D.C. region, where he has family. Opus Dei said on Monday that he "is suffering from advanced Alzheimer's disease, he is largely incapacitated for work and needs help with daily routine tasks, he has not had any pastoral duties for a number of years and can not celebrate Mass, even privately." ; [Ben Shapiro is headlining the March for Life. As a pro-lifer, I think that’s a huge mistake.] The woman, who stays close to Opus Dei and participates in some of their spiritual activities, said Monday that she was grateful to them for going public. She is now in the mid-fifties and was forty when the incidents with McCloskey took place. "I'm very happy with how it's handled right now, they listened," she said. When she first reported McCloskey's actions in the early 2000s, she said she did so in a confessional with a priest from Opus Dei in Virginia. The priest told her that she should not tell anyone else, including other priests, "so he could fix it," she said. Later, an Opus Dei priest tried to help her, she said, and encouraged her to seek medical and legal assistance. Finnerty said that the settlement for McCloskey is the only scheme for sexual misconduct that Opus Dei has ever paid in the United States. The group received a special contribution for this, he said. He would not call the donor. Before he became a priest, McCloskey worked for Citibank and Merrill Lynch on Wall Street, according to reports in the media. He was ordained a priest of Opus Dei in the early 1980s. He became a successful writer and religious commentator on television and radio, including the Catholic station EWTN. In a 2011 article by the Catholic News Agency, which had been a priest for 30 years, McCloskey said that God had used him "as an instrument in spite of myself to bring dozens of vocations to the priesthood, religious life, and new ecclesiastical movements, and this with my obvious mistakes and human shortcomings. "