Church Officials Unable to Protect Children From Priests With Sexually Abusive Tendencies

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia came under fire on Monday, March 21, when the fourth of an onslaught of sexual abuse cases was aimed at church officials. More specifically, church officials are being blamed for their inability to protect children from priests with sexually abusive tendencies.

The most recent suit against the church stems from a 32-year-old Arizona man’s allegations that he was sexually abused as an altar boy at the Our Lady of Calvary parish in northeast Philadelphia. The unnamed man claims that the late Monsignor John Gillespie sexually abused him numerous times between the years 1988 and 1991, and the church did nothing to prevent any further instances.

Numerous complaints were filed against Gillespie, who underwent treatment for sexual abuse circa 1991, yet he continued to be allowed to work with and around children of the parish. In the victim’s first attempt to file an official complaint against Gillespie, he was denied help which was later alleged by a grand jury as an act by the archdiocese to use the parish’s victim-services office to solely protect the interests of the church.

Gillespie’s name also happens to appear in another lawsuit filed by the same lawyers defending the aforementioned Arizona man. Their client, Phil Gaughan, claims the late Gillespie sexually abused him while he was an altar boy from 1994 to 1997. In each case, the victims are seeking over $50,000 in damages.

Have You or A Loved One Been the Victim of Clergy Sexual Abuse?

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