Skip to comments.Priest's Affidavit Accuses Late Bishop
Posted on 05/02/2002 6:17:56 AM PDT by marshmallow
ATLANTIC CITY - Three years before his death in 2001, a priest said he wanted to end "the silence of the decades" regarding alleged sexual abuse by his colleagues in the Camden Diocese.
So Monsignor Salvatore J. Adamo, then 78, went to the office of an attorney who had filed a class-action suit on behalf of victims and gave an affidavit in which he said the diocese promoted homosexual priests and ignored allegations of abuse to avoid moral responsibility and financial liability.
He said the late Bishop George Guilfoyle - who he said was known as "the Queen of the Fairies" - put his lovers in high positions in the diocese.
"As the years of my earthly journey are ebbing, I am compelled to speak the truth as to the germination of tragic incidents of pedophilia and sexual abuse that is known to have become incessantly rampant within the Diocese of Camden throughout the decades," Adamo said.
"I share years of personal knowledge and observations as a priest of the Diocese of Camden and servant of the Lord in rendering my opinion. I do so not to disgrace anyone or anyone's memory. I do so in the interests of disclosing the truth, to the extent that I know it, and in the interests of vindicating the victims of abuse," Adamo said.
The suit, which is being litigated in Superior Court, was filed in 1994 by 18 people who say they were molested by priests. It accused the diocese of covering up the abuse and in at least one case, transferring an accused priest to a new parish as a show of faith in his innocence.
Among the defendant priests is retired Monsignor Philip Rigney, 85, who allegedly molested two altar boy brothers for years.
Adamo's 1998 affidavit contains no details of firsthand knowledge of the alleged abuse and was barred from being admitted as testimony in the case.
It does appear in court documents.
"It is full of unsubstantiated claims and untruths," said Andrew Walton, a diocesan spokesman. Adamo was an "angry, bitter man" who had lingering resentment over having been passed up for promotions, Walton said.
Adamo served as executive editor of the diocese's weekly newspaper - the Catholic Star Herald - before being fired by Guilfoyle in 1977. He left the priesthood in 1991. He died in January 2001 of pneumonia.
According to his affidavit:
Once Guilfoyle became bishop, there was a noticeable change in regard to "sexual expression in the Diocese. ... Guilfoyle's sexual preference was apparent. [He] came to be referred to as the 'Queen of the Fairies.' He was ... prone to promote his alleged male 'lovers.'"
His "spiritual adviser" was the Rev. Patrick Weaver, an alleged pedophile who Adamo said was protected by the diocese "to avoid scandal and to cover up the record in Rome."
Rigney served as Guilfoyle's "pimp," using his position as director of vocations for the diocese to fill vacancies with "priests having a homosexual propensity."
Guilfoyle's successor, Bishop James T. McHugh, coerced Adamo into remaining silent on the topic, threatening to remove him as pastor of St. Vincent Palloti parish in Haddon Township and withhold pension money.
Walton would not comment Tuesday on the Adamo affidavit's allegations specifically, but disputed the assertion that McHugh tried to silence Adamo.
"Bishop McHugh wrote to him to insist that he stop writing about some of these issues because he so consistently and repeatedly misrepresented and mischaracterized the church's position on a whole range of issues," he said.
Walton noted that after Guilfoyle died in 1991, Adamo praised him as a gentleman and a model Christian in a newspaper column.
"Bishop Guilfoyle goes into eternity with the sign of the cross etched on his soul. He deserved to be loved more than he was," Adamo wrote in the column.
Rigney could not be reached for comment. A woman who answered the telephone at his home in Palm Beach County, Fla., hung up.
Somebody here is lying unashamedly.
Agreed, but no matter which party is lying, it still speaks of a spiritual "dis-ease" in and of the clergy.
Purge and Purification is the only answer to the Evil and filth that has been allowed to flourish and prosper and Catholics had better Organize against the demons from Hell.
The following is appropriate when thinking of Cardinal Law in Boston.
45 While all the people were listening, Jesus said to his disciples, 46 "Beware of the teachers of the law. They like to walk around in flowing robes and love to be greeted in the marketplaces and have the most important seats in the synagogues and the places of honor at banquets. 47 They devour widows' houses and for a show make lengthy prayers. Such men will be punished most severely."
God's people are God's people. One parish is chopped liver while another is pate?
Clawing over each other like junior partners in a law firm is unseemly, but I've seen more of it than I care to.
The new Guy puts his own people in place and gets rid of the previous group.
There is probably more politics within the Church hierarchy than in civilian politics and just as ruthless.
We met a Monsignor in a nursing home where he was a patient and told a friend who knew the politics of the Diocese of N.Y.,he said he wondered where this monsignor had gotten to since he fell out of favor..
I don't think we understand the Evil and Rot that presently envelopes our Church.
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