Today is the start of Holy Week, commemorating Christ’s triumphant entry into Jerusalem, and many headed to Palm Sunday Mass this morning. Buffalo Catholic Diocese Bishop Richard Malone was presiding over the service at St. Joseph Cathedral, in Buffalo, and started the morning by blessing the palms. But not everyone there came to worship. A group outside the church was there to get their pleas to Malone heard.
“We’re here today to demand that he come 100 percent clean about all that he knows,” Dr. Robert Hoatson said.
Dr. Robert Hoatson is a former priest for the Archdiocese of Newark, New Jersey. He founded Road to Recovery, which has helped more than 5,000 survivors of sexual abuse, many clergy victims. He’s in Buffalo wanting an explanation from Bishop Malone after recent reports of even more clergymen involved in the church’s sex abuse crisis.
“I want folks of Buffalo to go back to February of 2018, when Michael Whalen went public and created a tsunami of cases of sexual abuse by clergy,” he said. “At that time, Bishop Malone told us there were approximately 42 priests who had credible allegations of sexual abuse against them. Well we know know that that number is well over 100, and more recently 25 new names… at least.”
Still not on any list released by the Buffalo Diocese is the priest James Faluszczak claims abused him.
“I can’t even begin to tell you the fear that I still have… the anxiety that i still have,” Faluszczak said. “And even if I’ve got the presence of mind to talk to you folks, once I go home, the rest of the day I’m pretty miserable. “
Faluszczak came forward, publicly, on St. Patrick’s Day of last year. He said in the past year he hasn’t seen much change in the church, and Malone.
“At this point, he’s tripled down on saying that all his lists are out there, and we know that there are more,” he said. “Myself and other advocates are working with victims whose perpetrators haven’t been named yet.”
This week, the Buffalo Diocese released a statement saying it, “disclosed the complete scope of the crisis.” The organization maintains they have received allegations of child sex abuse against more than 130 diocesan priests and over 40 religious order priests.
A spokeswoman for the Buffalo Diocese said she had no comment regarding the protest outside St. Joseph Cathedral on Palm Sunday.