Wednesday, August 1, 2018

After McCarrick scandal, will Catholic seminaries better protect young adults?

Seminarians at Kenrick-Glennon Seminary in St. Louis prepare for Mass in this 2010 file photo. (CNS photo/Jerry Naunheim Jr., St. Louis Review)
Revelations that former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick faces credible allegations of unwanted sexual advances aimed at Catholic seminarians, in addition to fresh accusations that he sexually abused minors, raised questions about conditions in Catholic seminaries. Some experts believe that while many seminaries have established policies to protect adults studying to be priests and members of religious communities, seminary culture sometimes remains an obstacle to protecting them from predatory behavior.
Gerard McGlone, S.J., a psychologist and the associate director for the protection of minors at the Conference of Major Superiors of Men, an umbrella organization representing the heads of male religious orders in the United States, said that he believes most dioceses in the United States have guidelines for how a seminarian should report allegations of sexual misconduct, which often involve telling a spiritual director or a rector.

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