March 25, 2010.
The Vatican says it was not timely nor fully informed about the extent of the sexual abuse cases which occurred between 1950 and 1974, involving deaf children in Wisconsin.
According to the Vatican none of the bishops from that diocese informed the Vatican during that time period about Father Lawrence Murphy, who was accused of molesting 200 deaf boys.
It wasn’t until 22 years later, that the archbishop of Milwaukee, Rembert Weakland wrote to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which was under then Cardinal Ratzinger authority. Archbishop Weakland, reported the cases because they involved violation of the sacrament of confession. In other words, Father Lawrence was asking for sexual favors from victims in confessionals.
The Vatican says that it had only learned about these cases 22 years after they occurred.
Many of the victims say civil authorities and prosecutors also ignored their cases and although some of them were investigated, others were put on the back burner.
The Vatican says this is a tragic case, especially because it involved so many vulnerable deaf children at a boarding school.