Original Story, March 24, 2010
But Cardinal Bertone halted the process after Father Murphy personally wrote to Cardinal Ratzinger protesting that he should not be put on trial because he had already repented and was in poor health and that the case was beyond the church’s own statute of limitations. (Vatican Declined to Defrock U.S. Priest Who Abused Boys)
Updated, Follow-Up Story, Dated March 31, 2010
On Jan. 12, 1998, Father Murphy sent a letter from his home in Boulder Junction, Wis., to Cardinal Ratzinger. He asked for a cessation of the trial because he was 72, had had a stroke and had repented, and because the case was beyond the statute of limitations. On April 6, 1998, Archbishop Bertone wrote to Bishop Raphael M. Fliss of the Diocese of Superior in northern Wisconsin, where Father Murphy was living, saying that the statute of limitations was waived in this case. But Archbishop Bertone suggested that given Father Murphy’s letter asking for leniency, Bishop Fliss should employ “pastoral measures” instead of a trial. (Events in the Case of an Accused Priest)
And there it is, folks. The original story is still online, but Goodstein’s second account, published one week later, of Cardinal Bertone’s judgement is remarkably different. Where did the “halted process go”, Laurie? And yet the original error-laden story is still online, even though it has been superseded and corrected to some extent by the “followup” story. Not only is the New York Times content to be factually incorrect to prop up their anti-Catholic bigotry, now they like to run with two different versions of the same story at the same time. I guess they think it keeps everyone happy: Anti-Catholic bigots can still refer to the first article, but those pesky facts and the truth can be satisfied in the second article. Even the National Enquirer ensures that stories of Elvis’ sightings have their stories straight and don’t contradict one another. (Then again, given its trenchant coverage of John Edwards’ love child, the National Enquirer is no longer the slouch that the New York Times has become.)
But that’s how it works with the “journalists” and editors at the New York Times these days. Here’s a news flash for them: it’s not only the Catholic Church that needs to clean itself up, the media does too.
But you won’t likely see an apology or a formal and explicit retraction coming from the New York Times.
There won’t be a front page story saying anything of the kind. But then again, there is a price to pay for that as well. It’s called integrity and credibility – two qualities that the New York Times sold down the river as they drove by the Tiber.