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Report: Bridgeport Diocese Has Paid $52.5 Million To Settle Abuse Claims

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The Roman Catholic Diocese of Bridgeport has paid $52.5 million to settle claims of abuse by priests since 1953. That’s according to a report released by the diocese on Wednesday.

The Bridgeport Diocese says in the report it settled 156 cases since the 1950s.

Bishop Frank Caggiano said in a statement, “The much-needed financial accounting that is the focus of this report only hints at the profound toll of human and spiritual suffering caused by the sexual abuse of children.”

The report says that 97.7 percent – or $51.5 million – of the settlements were for claims of abuse that occurred before 1990.  

Most of the abuse happened in the 1970s. There was one settlement of an alleged abuse of a child by a priest that happened after 2000.


In New York City, a 74-year-old Catholic bishop has stepped down from public ministry after being accused of sexual abuse.

The allegations lodged against auxiliary Bishop John Jenik involved inappropriate behavior with a teenage boy in the 1980s, according to a report in The New York Times.

Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the archbishop of New York, said in a statement Wednesday that the Lay Review Board found the allegations credible.

Jenik says he is innocent and appealed to the Vatican to clear him.

Dolan said Jenik "may not function or present himself as a bishop or priest” pending the outcome of the review.


Copyright 2018 WSHU

Terry Sheridan is an award-winning radio journalist. As part of his duties as Long Island Bureau chief for WSHU, he oversees and mentors a newsroom staffed by students of the Stony Brook School of Journalism, where he is also a lecturer and adjunct professor.
Cassandra Basler comes to WSHU by way of Columbia Journalism School in New York City. She recently graduated with a Pulitzer Traveling Fellowship, which means she has two years to report on an issue anywhere in the world (she's still figuring out where she'd like to go). She grew up just north of Detroit, Michigan, where she worked for the local public radio affiliate. She also wrote about her adventures sampling the city cuisines for the first guidebook to be published in three decades, Belle Isle to 8 Mile: An Insider's Guide to Detroit. Before that, Cassandra studied English, German and Urban Studies at University of Michigan. When she's not reporting on wealth and poverty, she's writing about food and family.
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