Suspend Jalandhar Bishop – Dr. james kottoor

 

Progressive  Nuns group want what?

Pope to suspend Jalandhar Bishop

for alleged sex with Nun in Kerala

  1. james kottoor (Kochi)

This is all about a  petition demanding  suspension and removal of Bishop Franco Mulakkal of  Jalandhar by a “178 member group of  Indian Christian Women Movement consisting nearly 70 nuns 15 priests and the laity” reported in Matters India and published in CCV and commented upon. The petition is reportedly  submitted  to the Vatican Nuncio based in Delhi as the Pope’s ambassador.  (See. CCV  13/07/2018)

 

It is true that all secular papers in Kerala are making a feast of it as a spectacular news item as it deals with high profile persons in the church, namely a Bishop, a nun and various aspects of their  ‘illicit’ sexual  exploits. In fact the Times of India July 14 and 15 gives eight news headlines   and long write ups starting from front page to inner pages  dealing with  bishop, sister and related persons.

 

But the report in Matters India reproduced in CCV and commented upon doesn’t give names of leaders among the priests, sisters or  laity, nor the text of their petition. All these are basic elements needed to to establish  credibility of the report.

 

A similar instance happened long ago when CCV published  a report from Delhi about “Leading Christian intellectuals” and their demands with out giving names of those intellectuals, place of their meeting etc., which made the report suspect  and we had to nearly apologize for it.

 

So who could have been these leading lights among the 178-member group of progressive Catholic religious priests, nuns and laity? The case about the  Bishop  is in the initial stages of investigation only and before any one is proved  guilty  by the court, how can any progressive priest or nun decide the punishment and demand that Pope or his ambassador in Delhi impose it on the Jalandar bishop? Is it not premature, irrational and interfering in the due process of law to take its due course?

Letters received by CCV editor

Something leading to such a pass had already come to the notice of the editor of CCV days ahead of this publication and he was investigating about it. In fact two persons had approached him through emails on  July 11th for his ‘endorsement  and support’ for the suspension of Jelandar bishop and he  had to refuse it flatly. To get better clarity of the background of this unnamed source, please see the letters below:

Kochurani Abraham
11 Jul 2018
to zach, jmattappally, me, James

Friends,

In the context of the alleged rape of a nun by a catholic bishop and the silence of the church hierarchy, different  Christian groups and individual Christians concerned about  the integrity of the Church are taking the initiative to address this issue before the Catholic Church leadership in India.

 

Find attached two letters that request Church leadership to remove the accused bishop from his post until he is proved innocent. If you wish to endorse them, kindly send me your name, organization/Institute and the place by this evening.  If you do not wish to put your affiliation, please give your name  as Mr/Ms/Dr/Prof/ Adv …and the place.

 

If you would like to invite your friends, please feel free to do so and get their endorsements at the earliest best, Kochurani

Dr. Kochurani Abraham,Vice-President Indian Theological Association,Coordinator Indian Christian Women’s Movement (Kerala)

See attachment below for Endorsement

To The Most Reverend Giambattista Diquattro.

 Apostolic Nuncio to India Apoltolic Nunciature,

 50-C Niti Marg, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110 021

 nuntius@apoltolicnunciatureindia.com

 

Your Excellency,

Sub: The Alleged Abuse of a Religious Sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar Diocese.

We, the undersigned are deeply concerned about the integrity and mission of the Indian Church and write in the context of the growing scandal and the adverse publicity the Church is receiving with regard to the handling of the case of the alleged sexual abuse of a Religious sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar diocese.

 

We are particularly concerned about the mud-slinging going on between the Bishop and his priests on the one hand and the aggrieved sister and her family on the other that has turned the Church into an object of ridicule for people of the entire country, thus causing a lot of harm to the Church and in particular to the faith of the people of God.

 

In view of the above and now that the case has gone to the courts, we would urge you to please advise Pope Francis to relieve the bishop concerned of his pastoral responsibilities, so that the Church is seen to actually practice the ‘zero tolerance’ it professes to observe in abuse cases.

 

With the accused bishop continuing to remain in his position as Bishop of the Jalandhar diocese, it will erode the faith of the people in the credibility of the Church to implement its policy of zero tolerance and act justly in abuse matters.

 

We trust that Christ who is our light, and who always stood up against the exploitation of women will stand with the Church and give the leadership courage to do what is right in the cause of justice to women in the Church. Yours sincerely,

(No Name or signature of the petitioner. Immediately the editor replied. jk)

 

James Kottoor <jameskottoor@gmail.com>
11 Jul 2018,
to Kochurani, bcc: me

Many thanks Kochurani, for writing for the first time.

While appreciating your concern for the good name of the Church I wish to ask you: who are we — you and I — to pass judgment on Jalandar bishop and why have you  not taken any similar action in the case of more serious scandals like that of Alancherry and Kadappa bishops?

 

As I see it is totally wrong to pass judgment on a case still under investigation and premature to recommend punitive action on a case still to be proved.

 

Today I am leaving for Kochi from Chicago and look forward to possible meeting with you and discussing a lot of things.  God bless you if there is a god.  James (The writer left Chicago on July 11 and reached kochi on 13th only)

 

2: Sex Abuse Letters For Your Endorsements

x
Virginia Saldanha
11 Jul 2018
to me

Dear James,

 

Kindly read the attached letters and Let me know if you would like to endorse ASAP.

 

Please do not publish till we have handed the letters to the authorities.  Will let you know when you can publish.

 

The letters are addressed to the NUNCIO and Cardinal Oswald Gracias asking for the removal of the Bishop of Jalandhar since there is an accusation brought against him.  Today there is another report of abuse case brought against the Syro Malankara Church which is under CBCI.

 

The Pope has removed Cardinals and Bishops who had accusations brought against them even if they were not found guilty.  It is to demonstrate the will of the Church to be open, transparent and having zero tolerance in these matters.

Warm regards, Virginia, 2 Attachments

 

 

1.

  1. The Most Reverend Giambattista Diquattro Apostolic Nuncio to India Apoltolic Nunciature, 50-C Niti Marg, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110 021, nuntius@apoltolicnunciatureindia.com
  2. Your Excellency, Sub: The Alleged Abuse of a Religious Sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar Diocese.
  3. We, the undersigned are deeply concerned about the integrity and mission of the Indian Church and write in the context of the growing scandal and the adverse publicity the Church is receiving with regard to the handling of the case of the alleged sexual abuse of a Religious sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar diocese.
  4. We are particularly concerned about the mud-slinging going on between the Bishop and his priests on the one hand and the aggrieved sister and her family on the other that has turned the Church into an object of ridicule for people of the entire country, thus causing a lot of harm to the Church and in particular to the faith of the people of God.

 

8.             

9.            In view of the above and now that the case has gone to the courts, we would urge you to please advise Pope Francis to relieve the bishop concerned of his pastoral responsibilities, so that the Church is seen to actually practice the ‘zero tolerance’ it professes to observe in abuse cases. With the accused bishop continuing to remain in his position as Bishop of the Jalandhar diocese, it will erode the faith of the people in the credibility of the Church to implement its policy of zero tolerance and act justly in abuse matters. We trust that Christ who is our light, and who always stood up against the exploitation of women will stand with the Church and give the leadership courage to do what is right in the cause of justice to women in the Church. Yours sincerely,(No one has undersigned this either. Jk)

10.          

2.

To, Cardinal Oswald Gracias, Pope Francis’ Advisory Committee Member, President, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India (CBCI), Archbishops’ House, Mumbai.

 

Dear Cardinal Oswald Gracias,

Sub: The Alleged Abuse of a Religious Sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar Diocese.

 

We, the undersigned are deeply concerned about the integrity and mission of the Indian Church and write in the context of the growing scandal and the adverse publicity the Church is receiving with regard to the handling of the case of the alleged sexual abuse of a Religious sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar diocese .

 

We are particularly concerned about the mud-slinging going on between the Bishop and his priests on the one hand and the aggrieved sister and her family on the other that has turned the Church into an object of ridicule for people of the entire country, thus causing a lot of harm to the Church and in particular to the faith of the people of God.

 

In view of the above and now that the case has gone to the courts, we urge you to please advise Pope Francis to relieve the bishop concerned of his pastoral responsibilities, so that the Church is seen to actually practice the ‘zero tolerance’ it professes to observe in abuse cases. With the accused bishop continuing to remain in his position as Bishop of the Jalandhar diocese, it will continue to erode the faith of the people in the credibility of the Church to implement its policy of zero tolerance and act justly in abuse matters.

 

We also request you to advise the Bishops of India to publicise and create adequate awareness about the CBCI Guidelines to deal with Sexual Harassment in the Workplace, 2017, and institute the structures and procedures described therein without further delay. To preach justice the Church must be seen to practice justice (Synod of Bishops, 1971). Sadly the representations made by the Religious sister to the Bishops have brought no response, raising issues about the credibility of the CBCI policy. We would like to draw your attention to our letter addressed to the earlier President of the CBCI on 22nd March, 2017 and request you to kindly take action on the points made therein and reiterated below.

 

To this end kindly ensure that: 1. Every diocese respects and complies with the State laws with regard to addressing abuse cases of minors and sexual harassment of women in the Church. 2. The policy to prevent and deal with Sexual Abuse of Minors and Vulnerable Adults, as well as the Policy to prevent and deal with the Sexual Harassment of Women in the Workplace are disseminated to all the faithful and stake holders in Church and Church institutions so that they can be effectively implemented. 3. The required structures are set up within every diocese of the Church in India to address cases of sexual abuse and to prevent repeat bungling and criminal activity, not to speak of untold damage to the reputation of the Church and the faith of its people. The contact details of persons responsible to receive complaints should also be publicised prominently.

 

4. Greater attention is paid to the choice of candidates for the priesthood as well as to their formation in the seminary. This must include conscientization with regard to patriarchal attitudes that promote condescension and even aggression towards those considered “inferior”, and clericalism that is perceived to place the ordained outside civil law and permits lack of accountability and transparency. At its root, sexual abuse is ultimately not about sexuality or celibacy, but about the gross misuse of the disproportionate power assigned to clergy.

 

5. Catholic Church leadership in India does not take a silent or indifferent stand when a case is reported because it apparently protects the perpetrator. When a man who represents God to people, is a sexual offender, faith in the God he represents is shaken to the core. To the physical, mental and psychological trauma of the victim is added spiritual trauma. Not just the victim, but the entire family, the faith community and all those involved in the fight for justice are affected, and all need spiritual healing. We trust that Christ who is our light, and who always stood up against the exploitation of women will stand with the Church and give the CBCI the courage to do what is right in the cause of justice for women in the Church. Pope Francis has shown the way by holding accused Bishops accountable even at risk to the reputation of the Church. We look to our bishops to follow his example. Yours sincerely (No one has undersigned this either. Immediately the editor replied as below, Jk)

 

Hello Virginia,

I am sending you the same reply to the same letter I receivied

from Kochurani (Then I(jk) sent same letter I sent to Kochurani  and  added the following:

 

I am simply shocked to see you all get shocked and want to hang the bishop who allegedly raped a nun, Worse things happened before also,   starting with the murder of Abaya 26 years ago and many other cases later. Suddenly all of you “saintly clowns” start judging and condemning and want my support to execute someone who is to be still proved guilty. I wonder with which part of the body you all think. Pardon me for being brutal in my response. You don’t have my support at all, until the bishop is proved guilty.

Sorry I am packing up my laptop to go to Kochi. james

 

Note: To promote transparency about the back ground to the petition already published in CCV, all the information I received and know of is published herewith for  the benefit of the laity and the general public   since in none of the letters  names of any of the progressive group for the sake of transparency and credibility, is given or printed. So we can’t also vounch for the leader/s who wrote it. jk, editor ccv.

t

Editor back in Kochi

 

The CCV editor wrote those two letters before he left Chicago for Kochi, on july 11th and on reaching Kochi on July 13th and  checking the laptop he found the petition of the women’s  group in ‘Matters India’ reproduced in CCV and commented upon.

In the published version also no names of the petitioners were given, so it is impossible for the  editor to say if Sr.Kochurani and Virginia were the leaders of the women’s group of  178. In any case it is improper to publish reports about  serious crimes and suggest punishments with out naming the responsible news source and therefore unethical news in journalistic parlance.

How CCV Works

For the  information of the general public the CCV is published by a team of three  and the standing rule is no item in the CCV, especially sensitive items of this type, is to be published without the approval of the Chief editor, which is either ignored or taken lightly by some in the group, for which the editor apologizes.The present half cooked news would not have been published had it come to the notice of the chief editor.

But then such things are happening daily as if it is the order of the day where Pope’s  orders are ignored by bishops, bishop’s orders by priests and sisters etc. It was about this Pope John XXIII expressed his helplessness saying: “I am only the Pope!”

In any case CCV does not think it right and proper for any group, however progressive, enlightened and concerned they think they are in the Church to demand punitive action from Pope  especially when the case is only in the initial state of investigation to prove who is guilty and what punishment he/she deserves.

First of all Jesus’ teachings tell us: judge not and you shall not be judged, that is, not to be judgemental but be merciful and forgiving. Then what about alleged crimes in the process of investigation? Won’t it be height of arrogance and lack of transparancy to throw stones hiding in darkness(not revealing names of leaders in the petition)? Besides there are worse scandals involving bishops, priests, religious and laity to be settled more ugrently

Kadappa Episode

We outselves had written a lot about Kadappa bishop and the conspiracy of silence on the part of other bishops. Now in the face of new verifiable facts emerging, it looks we were supporting him as Francis supported Bishop Barros of Chille. The full story can be published only when the investigation is completed and clear proofs are brought out and responses to our letters sent to knowledgeable sources.

As an elderly person who has underwent and three year degree course in professional Journalism I have to say this to prevent some of the unethical practices we indulge in, although I cannot enforce the correct thing only on myself.

Crime and punishment

A crime is a crime who ever commits — cardinal, bishop, priest, religious or laity. When an elderly sister in W.Bengal was raped the Catholic Church made hell of a noise and it was reported that even Mar Baselios went all the way to see and comfort her although he refused to write even a letter to the Kadappa bishop even after requests from many quarters. Equality among the followers of Jesus has to be maintained at all cost, and one treatment for a lay person, another for a sister, priest, bishop, cardinal etc.

 

There are many versions about the  rape of a Sister by Jalandar bishop, At one time it was 13 times then it became 14 times, at short or long intervals from 2014.. So was it real rape or consensual sex. Was the sister totally innocent? Then there are allegations that the sister was having affairs with the husband of her cousin and destroying peace in that family. Then, is it not proper to go first defending the most exploited  children and teen age groups among the  Dalits and poorest of poor sections in the country who are raped and treated like dirt by the upper caste and highly placed in  religion and politics than waste time on high profile cases?

 

What would Jesus do?

What would Jesus do in the present situation in India, especially about  the sex-related adventures of the hierarchical class. He said something which should be unnerving to them all: “The drunkards and prostitutes will go to heaven before you”(High priests and Pharisees of his time.) That means their successors today are worse than the public sinners. So no progressive group  may have to waste precious time for them whether sister, priest or bishop.

 

What may be needed in India may be a Chile-like cleansing so that      the eyes of the whole  Indian episcopate may open and offer to resisgn(in Chile all 34 offered). But there must be open dialogue between Boishops and laity on all issues which is impossible as long as the Indian bishops resort to conspiracy of silence.

So let  all high profile cases be reported to civil  courts for speedy trial since no church court will  ever do justice to their beloved ones. And let progressive women’s group busy themselves with the protection of  the lowly placed for whom there is no law to take care or influential persons to speak for  or protest against.

Contact at: jameskottoor@gmail.com, Mob.9446219203

***************************************

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Progressive  Nuns group want what?

Pope to suspend Jalandhar Bishop

for alleged sex with Nun in Kerala

  1. james kottoor (Kochi)

This is all about a  petition demanding  suspension and removal of Bishop Franco Mulakkal of  Jalandhar by a “178 member group of  Indian Christian Women Movement consisting nearly 70 nuns 15 priests and the laity” reported in Matters India and published in CCV and commented upon. The petition is reportedly  submitted  to the Vatican Nuncio based in Delhi as the Pope’s ambassador.  (See. CCV  13/07/2018)

 

It is true that all secular papers in Kerala are making a feast of it as a spectacular news item as it deals with high profile persons in the church, namely a Bishop, a nun and various aspects of their  ‘illicit’ sexual  exploits. In fact the Times of India July 14 and 15 gives eight news headlines   and long write ups starting from front page to inner pages  dealing with  bishop, sister and related persons.

 

But the report in Matters India reproduced in CCV and commented upon doesn’t give names of leaders among the priests, sisters or  laity, nor the text of their petition. All these are basic elements needed to to establish  credibility of the report.

 

A similar instance happened long ago when CCV published  a report from Delhi about “Leading Christian intellectuals” and their demands with out giving names of those intellectuals, place of their meeting etc., which made the report suspect  and we had to nearly apologize for it.

 

So who could have been these leading lights among the 178-member group of progressive Catholic religious priests, nuns and laity? The case about the  Bishop  is in the initial stages of investigation only and before any one is proved  guilty  by the court, how can any progressive priest or nun decide the punishment and demand that Pope or his ambassador in Delhi impose it on the Jalandar bishop? Is it not premature, irrational and interfering in the due process of law to take its due course?

Letters received by CCV editor

Something leading to such a pass had already come to the notice of the editor of CCV days ahead of this publication and he was investigating about it. In fact two persons had approached him through emails on  July 11th for his ‘endorsement  and support’ for the suspension of Jelandar bishop and he  had to refuse it flatly. To get better clarity of the background of this unnamed source, please see the letters below:

Kochurani Abraham
11 Jul 2018
to zach, jmattappally, me, James

Friends,

In the context of the alleged rape of a nun by a catholic bishop and the silence of the church hierarchy, different  Christian groups and individual Christians concerned about  the integrity of the Church are taking the initiative to address this issue before the Catholic Church leadership in India.

 

Find attached two letters that request Church leadership to remove the accused bishop from his post until he is proved innocent. If you wish to endorse them, kindly send me your name, organization/Institute and the place by this evening.  If you do not wish to put your affiliation, please give your name  as Mr/Ms/Dr/Prof/ Adv …and the place.

 

If you would like to invite your friends, please feel free to do so and get their endorsements at the earliest best, Kochurani

Dr. Kochurani Abraham,Vice-President Indian Theological Association,Coordinator Indian Christian Women’s Movement (Kerala)

See attachment below for Endorsement

To The Most Reverend Giambattista Diquattro.

 Apostolic Nuncio to India Apoltolic Nunciature,

 50-C Niti Marg, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110 021

 nuntius@apoltolicnunciatureindia.com

 

Your Excellency,

Sub: The Alleged Abuse of a Religious Sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar Diocese.

We, the undersigned are deeply concerned about the integrity and mission of the Indian Church and write in the context of the growing scandal and the adverse publicity the Church is receiving with regard to the handling of the case of the alleged sexual abuse of a Religious sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar diocese.

 

We are particularly concerned about the mud-slinging going on between the Bishop and his priests on the one hand and the aggrieved sister and her family on the other that has turned the Church into an object of ridicule for people of the entire country, thus causing a lot of harm to the Church and in particular to the faith of the people of God.

 

In view of the above and now that the case has gone to the courts, we would urge you to please advise Pope Francis to relieve the bishop concerned of his pastoral responsibilities, so that the Church is seen to actually practice the ‘zero tolerance’ it professes to observe in abuse cases.

 

With the accused bishop continuing to remain in his position as Bishop of the Jalandhar diocese, it will erode the faith of the people in the credibility of the Church to implement its policy of zero tolerance and act justly in abuse matters.

 

We trust that Christ who is our light, and who always stood up against the exploitation of women will stand with the Church and give the leadership courage to do what is right in the cause of justice to women in the Church. Yours sincerely,

(No Name or signature of the petitioner. Immediately the editor replied. jk)

 

James Kottoor <jameskottoor@gmail.com>
11 Jul 2018,
to Kochurani, bcc: me

Many thanks Kochurani, for writing for the first time.

While appreciating your concern for the good name of the Church I wish to ask you: who are we — you and I — to pass judgment on Jalandar bishop and why have you  not taken any similar action in the case of more serious scandals like that of Alancherry and Kadappa bishops?

 

As I see it is totally wrong to pass judgment on a case still under investigation and premature to recommend punitive action on a case still to be proved.

 

Today I am leaving for Kochi from Chicago and look forward to possible meeting with you and discussing a lot of things.  God bless you if there is a god.  James (The writer left Chicago on July 11 and reached kochi on 13th only)

 

2: Sex Abuse Letters For Your Endorsements

x
Virginia Saldanha
11 Jul 2018
to me

Dear James,

 

Kindly read the attached letters and Let me know if you would like to endorse ASAP.

 

Please do not publish till we have handed the letters to the authorities.  Will let you know when you can publish.

 

The letters are addressed to the NUNCIO and Cardinal Oswald Gracias asking for the removal of the Bishop of Jalandhar since there is an accusation brought against him.  Today there is another report of abuse case brought against the Syro Malankara Church which is under CBCI.

 

The Pope has removed Cardinals and Bishops who had accusations brought against them even if they were not found guilty.  It is to demonstrate the will of the Church to be open, transparent and having zero tolerance in these matters.

Warm regards, Virginia, 2 Attachments

 

 

1.

  1. The Most Reverend Giambattista Diquattro Apostolic Nuncio to India Apoltolic Nunciature, 50-C Niti Marg, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110 021, nuntius@apoltolicnunciatureindia.com
  2. Your Excellency, Sub: The Alleged Abuse of a Religious Sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar Diocese.
  3. We, the undersigned are deeply concerned about the integrity and mission of the Indian Church and write in the context of the growing scandal and the adverse publicity the Church is receiving with regard to the handling of the case of the alleged sexual abuse of a Religious sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar diocese.
  4. We are particularly concerned about the mud-slinging going on between the Bishop and his priests on the one hand and the aggrieved sister and her family on the other that has turned the Church into an object of ridicule for people of the entire country, thus causing a lot of harm to the Church and in particular to the faith of the people of God.

 

8.             

9.            In view of the above and now that the case has gone to the courts, we would urge you to please advise Pope Francis to relieve the bishop concerned of his pastoral responsibilities, so that the Church is seen to actually practice the ‘zero tolerance’ it professes to observe in abuse cases. With the accused bishop continuing to remain in his position as Bishop of the Jalandhar diocese, it will erode the faith of the people in the credibility of the Church to implement its policy of zero tolerance and act justly in abuse matters. We trust that Christ who is our light, and who always stood up against the exploitation of women will stand with the Church and give the leadership courage to do what is right in the cause of justice to women in the Church. Yours sincerely,(No one has undersigned this either. Jk)

10.          

2.

To, Cardinal Oswald Gracias, Pope Francis’ Advisory Committee Member, President, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India (CBCI), Archbishops’ House, Mumbai.

 

Dear Cardinal Oswald Gracias,

Sub: The Alleged Abuse of a Religious Sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar Diocese.

 

We, the undersigned are deeply concerned about the integrity and mission of the Indian Church and write in the context of the growing scandal and the adverse publicity the Church is receiving with regard to the handling of the case of the alleged sexual abuse of a Religious sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar diocese .

 

We are particularly concerned about the mud-slinging going on between the Bishop and his priests on the one hand and the aggrieved sister and her family on the other that has turned the Church into an object of ridicule for people of the entire country, thus causing a lot of harm to the Church and in particular to the faith of the people of God.

 

In view of the above and now that the case has gone to the courts, we urge you to please advise Pope Francis to relieve the bishop concerned of his pastoral responsibilities, so that the Church is seen to actually practice the ‘zero tolerance’ it professes to observe in abuse cases. With the accused bishop continuing to remain in his position as Bishop of the Jalandhar diocese, it will continue to erode the faith of the people in the credibility of the Church to implement its policy of zero tolerance and act justly in abuse matters.

 

We also request you to advise the Bishops of India to publicise and create adequate awareness about the CBCI Guidelines to deal with Sexual Harassment in the Workplace, 2017, and institute the structures and procedures described therein without further delay. To preach justice the Church must be seen to practice justice (Synod of Bishops, 1971). Sadly the representations made by the Religious sister to the Bishops have brought no response, raising issues about the credibility of the CBCI policy. We would like to draw your attention to our letter addressed to the earlier President of the CBCI on 22nd March, 2017 and request you to kindly take action on the points made therein and reiterated below.

 

To this end kindly ensure that: 1. Every diocese respects and complies with the State laws with regard to addressing abuse cases of minors and sexual harassment of women in the Church. 2. The policy to prevent and deal with Sexual Abuse of Minors and Vulnerable Adults, as well as the Policy to prevent and deal with the Sexual Harassment of Women in the Workplace are disseminated to all the faithful and stake holders in Church and Church institutions so that they can be effectively implemented. 3. The required structures are set up within every diocese of the Church in India to address cases of sexual abuse and to prevent repeat bungling and criminal activity, not to speak of untold damage to the reputation of the Church and the faith of its people. The contact details of persons responsible to receive complaints should also be publicised prominently.

 

4. Greater attention is paid to the choice of candidates for the priesthood as well as to their formation in the seminary. This must include conscientization with regard to patriarchal attitudes that promote condescension and even aggression towards those considered “inferior”, and clericalism that is perceived to place the ordained outside civil law and permits lack of accountability and transparency. At its root, sexual abuse is ultimately not about sexuality or celibacy, but about the gross misuse of the disproportionate power assigned to clergy.

 

5. Catholic Church leadership in India does not take a silent or indifferent stand when a case is reported because it apparently protects the perpetrator. When a man who represents God to people, is a sexual offender, faith in the God he represents is shaken to the core. To the physical, mental and psychological trauma of the victim is added spiritual trauma. Not just the victim, but the entire family, the faith community and all those involved in the fight for justice are affected, and all need spiritual healing. We trust that Christ who is our light, and who always stood up against the exploitation of women will stand with the Church and give the CBCI the courage to do what is right in the cause of justice for women in the Church. Pope Francis has shown the way by holding accused Bishops accountable even at risk to the reputation of the Church. We look to our bishops to follow his example. Yours sincerely (No one has undersigned this either. Immediately the editor replied as below, Jk)

 

Hello Virginia,

I am sending you the same reply to the same letter I receivied

from Kochurani (Then I(jk) sent same letter I sent to Kochurani  and  added the following:

 

I am simply shocked to see you all get shocked and want to hang the bishop who allegedly raped a nun, Worse things happened before also,   starting with the murder of Abaya 26 years ago and many other cases later. Suddenly all of you “saintly clowns” start judging and condemning and want my support to execute someone who is to be still proved guilty. I wonder with which part of the body you all think. Pardon me for being brutal in my response. You don’t have my support at all, until the bishop is proved guilty.

Sorry I am packing up my laptop to go to Kochi. james

 

Note: To promote transparency about the back ground to the petition already published in CCV, all the information I received and know of is published herewith for  the benefit of the laity and the general public   since in none of the letters  names of any of the progressive group for the sake of transparency and credibility, is given or printed. So we can’t also vounch for the leader/s who wrote it. jk, editor ccv.

t

Editor back in Kochi

 

The CCV editor wrote those two letters before he left Chicago for Kochi, on july 11th and on reaching Kochi on July 13th and  checking the laptop he found the petition of the women’s  group in ‘Matters India’ reproduced in CCV and commented upon.

In the published version also no names of the petitioners were given, so it is impossible for the  editor to say if Sr.Kochurani and Virginia were the leaders of the women’s group of  178. In any case it is improper to publish reports about  serious crimes and suggest punishments with out naming the responsible news source and therefore unethical news in journalistic parlance.

How CCV Works

For the  information of the general public the CCV is published by a team of three  and the standing rule is no item in the CCV, especially sensitive items of this type, is to be published without the approval of the Chief editor, which is either ignored or taken lightly by some in the group, for which the editor apologizes.The present half cooked news would not have been published had it come to the notice of the chief editor.

But then such things are happening daily as if it is the order of the day where Pope’s  orders are ignored by bishops, bishop’s orders by priests and sisters etc. It was about this Pope John XXIII expressed his helplessness saying: “I am only the Pope!”

In any case CCV does not think it right and proper for any group, however progressive, enlightened and concerned they think they are in the Church to demand punitive action from Pope  especially when the case is only in the initial state of investigation to prove who is guilty and what punishment he/she deserves.

First of all Jesus’ teachings tell us: judge not and you shall not be judged, that is, not to be judgemental but be merciful and forgiving. Then what about alleged crimes in the process of investigation? Won’t it be height of arrogance and lack of transparancy to throw stones hiding in darkness(not revealing names of leaders in the petition)? Besides there are worse scandals involving bishops, priests, religious and laity to be settled more ugrently

Kadappa Episode

We outselves had written a lot about Kadappa bishop and the conspiracy of silence on the part of other bishops. Now in the face of new verifiable facts emerging, it looks we were supporting him as Francis supported Bishop Barros of Chille. The full story can be published only when the investigation is completed and clear proofs are brought out and responses to our letters sent to knowledgeable sources.

As an elderly person who has underwent and three year degree course in professional Journalism I have to say this to prevent some of the unethical practices we indulge in, although I cannot enforce the correct thing only on myself.

Crime and punishment

A crime is a crime who ever commits — cardinal, bishop, priest, religious or laity. When an elderly sister in W.Bengal was raped the Catholic Church made hell of a noise and it was reported that even Mar Baselios went all the way to see and comfort her although he refused to write even a letter to the Kadappa bishop even after requests from many quarters. Equality among the followers of Jesus has to be maintained at all cost, and one treatment for a lay person, another for a sister, priest, bishop, cardinal etc.

 

There are many versions about the  rape of a Sister by Jalandar bishop, At one time it was 13 times then it became 14 times, at short or long intervals from 2014.. So was it real rape or consensual sex. Was the sister totally innocent? Then there are allegations that the sister was having affairs with the husband of her cousin and destroying peace in that family. Then, is it not proper to go first defending the most exploited  children and teen age groups among the  Dalits and poorest of poor sections in the country who are raped and treated like dirt by the upper caste and highly placed in  religion and politics than waste time on high profile cases?

 

What would Jesus do?

What would Jesus do in the present situation in India, especially about  the sex-related adventures of the hierarchical class. He said something which should be unnerving to them all: “The drunkards and prostitutes will go to heaven before you”(High priests and Pharisees of his time.) That means their successors today are worse than the public sinners. So no progressive group  may have to waste precious time for them whether sister, priest or bishop.

 

What may be needed in India may be a Chile-like cleansing so that      the eyes of the whole  Indian episcopate may open and offer to resisgn(in Chile all 34 offered). But there must be open dialogue between Boishops and laity on all issues which is impossible as long as the Indian bishops resort to conspiracy of silence.

So let  all high profile cases be reported to civil  courts for speedy trial since no church court will  ever do justice to their beloved ones. And let progressive women’s group busy themselves with the protection of  the lowly placed for whom there is no law to take care or influential persons to speak for  or protest against.

Contact at: jameskottoor@gmail.com, Mob.9446219203

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Kochurani Abraham
11 Jul 2018
to zach, jmattappally, me, James

Friends,

In the context of the alleged rape of a nun by a catholic bishop and the silence of the church hierarchy, different  Christian groups and individual Christians concerned about  the integrity of the Church are taking the initiative to address this issue before the Catholic Church leadership in India.

 

Find attached two letters that request Church leadership to remove the accused bishop from his post until he is proved innocent. If you wish to endorse them, kindly send me your name, organization/Institute and the place by this evening.  If you do not wish to put your affiliation, please give your name  as Mr/Ms/Dr/Prof/ Adv …and the place.

 

If you would like to invite your friends, please feel free to do so and get their endorsements at the earliest best, Kochurani

Dr. Kochurani Abraham,Vice-President Indian Theological Association,Coordinator Indian Christian Women’s Movement (Kerala)

See attachment below for Endorsement

To The Most Reverend Giambattista Diquattro.

 Apostolic Nuncio to India Apoltolic Nunciature,

 50-C Niti Marg, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110 021

 nuntius@apoltolicnunciatureindia.com

 

Your Excellency,

Sub: The Alleged Abuse of a Religious Sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar Diocese.

We, the undersigned are deeply concerned about the integrity and mission of the Indian Church and write in the context of the growing scandal and the adverse publicity the Church is receiving with regard to the handling of the case of the alleged sexual abuse of a Religious sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar diocese.

 

We are particularly concerned about the mud-slinging going on between the Bishop and his priests on the one hand and the aggrieved sister and her family on the other that has turned the Church into an object of ridicule for people of the entire country, thus causing a lot of harm to the Church and in particular to the faith of the people of God.

 

In view of the above and now that the case has gone to the courts, we would urge you to please advise Pope Francis to relieve the bishop concerned of his pastoral responsibilities, so that the Church is seen to actually practice the ‘zero tolerance’ it professes to observe in abuse cases.

 

With the accused bishop continuing to remain in his position as Bishop of the Jalandhar diocese, it will erode the faith of the people in the credibility of the Church to implement its policy of zero tolerance and act justly in abuse matters.

 

We trust that Christ who is our light, and who always stood up against the exploitation of women will stand with the Church and give the leadership courage to do what is right in the cause of justice to women in the Church. Yours sincerely,

(No Name or signature of the petitioner. Immediately the editor replied. jk)

 

James Kottoor <jameskottoor@gmail.com>
11 Jul 2018,
to Kochurani, bcc: me

Many thanks Kochurani, for writing for the first time.

While appreciating your concern for the good name of the Church I wish to ask you: who are we — you and I — to pass judgment on Jalandar bishop and why have you  not taken any similar action in the case of more serious scandals like that of Alancherry and Kadappa bishops?

 

As I see it is totally wrong to pass judgment on a case still under investigation and premature to recommend punitive action on a case still to be proved.

 

Today I am leaving for Kochi from Chicago and look forward to possible meeting with you and discussing a lot of things.  God bless you if there is a god.  James (The writer left Chicago on July 11 and reached kochi on 13th only)

 

2: Sex Abuse Letters For Your Endorsements

x
Virginia Saldanha
11 Jul 2018
to me

Dear James,

 

Kindly read the attached letters and Let me know if you would like to endorse ASAP.

 

Please do not publish till we have handed the letters to the authorities.  Will let you know when you can publish.

 

The letters are addressed to the NUNCIO and Cardinal Oswald Gracias asking for the removal of the Bishop of Jalandhar since there is an accusation brought against him.  Today there is another report of abuse case brought against the Syro Malankara Church which is under CBCI.

 

The Pope has removed Cardinals and Bishops who had accusations brought against them even if they were not found guilty.  It is to demonstrate the will of the Church to be open, transparent and having zero tolerance in these matters.

Warm regards, Virginia, 2 Attachments

 

 

1.

  1. The Most Reverend Giambattista Diquattro Apostolic Nuncio to India Apoltolic Nunciature, 50-C Niti Marg, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110 021, nuntius@apoltolicnunciatureindia.com
  2. Your Excellency, Sub: The Alleged Abuse of a Religious Sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar Diocese.
  3. We, the undersigned are deeply concerned about the integrity and mission of the Indian Church and write in the context of the growing scandal and the adverse publicity the Church is receiving with regard to the handling of the case of the alleged sexual abuse of a Religious sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar diocese.
  4. We are particularly concerned about the mud-slinging going on between the Bishop and his priests on the one hand and the aggrieved sister and her family on the other that has turned the Church into an object of ridicule for people of the entire country, thus causing a lot of harm to the Church and in particular to the faith of the people of God.

 

8.             

9.            In view of the above and now that the case has gone to the courts, we would urge you to please advise Pope Francis to relieve the bishop concerned of his pastoral responsibilities, so that the Church is seen to actually practice the ‘zero tolerance’ it professes to observe in abuse cases. With the accused bishop continuing to remain in his position as Bishop of the Jalandhar diocese, it will erode the faith of the people in the credibility of the Church to implement its policy of zero tolerance and act justly in abuse matters. We trust that Christ who is our light, and who always stood up against the exploitation of women will stand with the Church and give the leadership courage to do what is right in the cause of justice to women in the Church. Yours sincerely,(No one has undersigned this either. Jk)

10.          

2.

To, Cardinal Oswald Gracias, Pope Francis’ Advisory Committee Member, President, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India (CBCI), Archbishops’ House, Mumbai.

 

Dear Cardinal Oswald Gracias,

Sub: The Alleged Abuse of a Religious Sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar Diocese.

 

We, the undersigned are deeply concerned about the integrity and mission of the Indian Church and write in the context of the growing scandal and the adverse publicity the Church is receiving with regard to the handling of the case of the alleged sexual abuse of a Religious sister by the Bishop of Jalandhar diocese .

 

We are particularly concerned about the mud-slinging going on between the Bishop and his priests on the one hand and the aggrieved sister and her family on the other that has turned the Church into an object of ridicule for people of the entire country, thus causing a lot of harm to the Church and in particular to the faith of the people of God.

 

In view of the above and now that the case has gone to the courts, we urge you to please advise Pope Francis to relieve the bishop concerned of his pastoral responsibilities, so that the Church is seen to actually practice the ‘zero tolerance’ it professes to observe in abuse cases. With the accused bishop continuing to remain in his position as Bishop of the Jalandhar diocese, it will continue to erode the faith of the people in the credibility of the Church to implement its policy of zero tolerance and act justly in abuse matters.

 

We also request you to advise the Bishops of India to publicise and create adequate awareness about the CBCI Guidelines to deal with Sexual Harassment in the Workplace, 2017, and institute the structures and procedures described therein without further delay. To preach justice the Church must be seen to practice justice (Synod of Bishops, 1971). Sadly the representations made by the Religious sister to the Bishops have brought no response, raising issues about the credibility of the CBCI policy. We would like to draw your attention to our letter addressed to the earlier President of the CBCI on 22nd March, 2017 and request you to kindly take action on the points made therein and reiterated below.

 

To this end kindly ensure that: 1. Every diocese respects and complies with the State laws with regard to addressing abuse cases of minors and sexual harassment of women in the Church. 2. The policy to prevent and deal with Sexual Abuse of Minors and Vulnerable Adults, as well as the Policy to prevent and deal with the Sexual Harassment of Women in the Workplace are disseminated to all the faithful and stake holders in Church and Church institutions so that they can be effectively implemented. 3. The required structures are set up within every diocese of the Church in India to address cases of sexual abuse and to prevent repeat bungling and criminal activity, not to speak of untold damage to the reputation of the Church and the faith of its people. The contact details of persons responsible to receive complaints should also be publicised prominently.

 

4. Greater attention is paid to the choice of candidates for the priesthood as well as to their formation in the seminary. This must include conscientization with regard to patriarchal attitudes that promote condescension and even aggression towards those considered “inferior”, and clericalism that is perceived to place the ordained outside civil law and permits lack of accountability and transparency. At its root, sexual abuse is ultimately not about sexuality or celibacy, but about the gross misuse of the disproportionate power assigned to clergy.

 

5. Catholic Church leadership in India does not take a silent or indifferent stand when a case is reported because it apparently protects the perpetrator. When a man who represents God to people, is a sexual offender, faith in the God he represents is shaken to the core. To the physical, mental and psychological trauma of the victim is added spiritual trauma. Not just the victim, but the entire family, the faith community and all those involved in the fight for justice are affected, and all need spiritual healing. We trust that Christ who is our light, and who always stood up against the exploitation of women will stand with the Church and give the CBCI the courage to do what is right in the cause of justice for women in the Church. Pope Francis has shown the way by holding accused Bishops accountable even at risk to the reputation of the Church. We look to our bishops to follow his example. Yours sincerely (No one has undersigned this either. Immediately the editor replied as below, Jk)

 

Hello Virginia,

I am sending you the same reply to the same letter I receivied

from Kochurani (Then I(jk) sent same letter I sent to Kochurani  and  added the following:

 

I am simply shocked to see you all get shocked and want to hang the bishop who allegedly raped a nun, Worse things happened before also,   starting with the murder of Abaya 26 years ago and many other cases later. Suddenly all of you “saintly clowns” start judging and condemning and want my support to execute someone who is to be still proved guilty. I wonder with which part of the body you all think. Pardon me for being brutal in my response. You don’t have my support at all, until the bishop is proved guilty.

Sorry I am packing up my laptop to go to Kochi. james

 

Note: To promote transparency about the back ground to the petition already published in CCV, all the information I received and know of is published herewith for  the benefit of the laity and the general public   since in none of the letters  names of any of the progressive group for the sake of transparency and credibility, is given or printed. So we can’t also vounch for the leader/s who wrote it. jk, editor ccv.

t

Editor back in Kochi

 

The CCV editor wrote those two letters before he left Chicago for Kochi, on july 11th and on reaching Kochi on July 13th and  checking the laptop he found the petition of the women’s  group in ‘Matters India’ reproduced in CCV and commented upon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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About The Voice Of Bombay's Catholic Laity

Bombay Laity Ezekiel’s Chapter 3 Task as Watchman 17 “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the people of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. 18 When I say to a wicked person, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn them or speak out to dissuade them from their evil ways in order to save their life, that wicked person will die for[b] their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. 19 But if you do warn the wicked person and they do not turn from their wickedness or from their evil ways, they will die for their sin; but you will have saved yourself.
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