No red herrings, please. Let’s talk about the REAL scandal in St. Paul

Mike Stechschulte. He likes fish, especially red herring
Mike Stechschulte. He likes fish, especially red herring

The Red Herring Award of the month is a doozey:

Earlier this week, this op-ed appeared in the Port Huron MI Times Herald. The author, Mike Stechschulte, says that the media and the public need “perspective” about the clergy abuse crisis. He cites “huge improvements in policies,” low numbers of recent clergy sex abuse cases, and a recent problematic abuse allegation made against St. Paul and Minneapolis Archbishop John Nienstedt (currently being investigated) as proof that we need to focus our attentions elsewhere.

But a single allegation against the Archbishop is NOT why there is a scandal in St. Paul. It’s a big, fat red herring and Stechschulte hopes that low-information citizens will fall in step.

Stechschulte is wrong. There is a huge scandal in St. Paul, and the media and public must maintain razor sharp focus. It’s not about a recent allegation; it’s about the COVER-UP.

Here’s what Stechschulte “forgot” to tell the folks in Port Huron:

– The fact that just this month, the Archdiocese was forced by the courts to make public the names of credibly accused priests. When church officials “suddenly” decided to review their own files on these men, two priests were put on leave. Why didn’t the Archbishop put them on leave when the credible accusations were made and verified? Why didn’t church leaders warn parishioners and protect kids? THAT’S a scandal.

– Stechschulte neglected to include that the former Vicar for Clergy (and brother of Obama’s chief of staff) is refusing to cooperate with police and hired a personal attorney. THAT’S a scandal.

– He “forgot” to mention the Curtis Wehmeyer case, the child porn cache in the Archdiocese basement, and the whistleblower who blew the lid off of the cover-up just this past autumn. Yeah, you got it: THAT’S a scandal.

– Oh wait, there’s something else: Stechschulte and the editors of the Times Herald also didn’t mention the fact that the fact that Stechschulte is currently managing editor at The Michigan Catholic, the official paper of the Archdiocese of Detroit. C’mon. That’s lame. By not coming clean about Stechschulte’s job and bias, the editors risked their credibility in ALL aspects of the paper. Scandalous? Yeah.

Stechschulte can keep his red herrings. The rest of us will wait for justice and accountability.


8 thoughts on “No red herrings, please. Let’s talk about the REAL scandal in St. Paul

  1. Great job Joelle. This guy is either a dupe for the archdiocese or colossally delusional. His arguments are straight out of the bishops’ nonsensical playbook which has zero credibility with anyone living on planet earth. Happy new year. Tom



    In regards to your concern, news of my current position as managing editor of The Michigan Catholic Newspaper has been published in several previous columns and is not a fact I hide. Regular readers of my column are aware of this, as I’ve on numerous occasions stated it myself, including and especially when the transition was initially made.

    I do not include my current position as a tagline to avoid the impression that my own opinions are those of the newspaper I currently manage. They are not, and they are my opinions solely. I include my personal contact information for that very reason. The Times Herald has its own reasons for including my past position as a copy editor there, but my current position neither has any bearing on the opinions I publish nor has been kept secret from readers by any means, a fact of which Mr. Eckert is well aware.

    I hope this addresses your concerns, and I’d be happy to address any others you may have.


    Mike Stechschulte

  3. Thanks for your efforts to continue to unmask these “men of God” who care more about their position, power and money than God’s little ones. Keep up the good work!!

  4. In addition, you can *never* get one of these TOOLS to read any of the truth, as no truthful information has the “imprimatur” and “nihil obstat” that all “true” catholics must see on a document or they will dismiss it out of hand, refuse to read it, and condemn it for being “anti-catholic propaganda”. Mortal Sins does not have these official okey-dokeys in its front pages, so TOOLS like Stechschulte will never even look in its direction much less open it and read it. These TOOLS will *never* get it because they are brainwashed.

  5. Thanks, Joelle, for deconstructing the writings of a big TOOL of the RCC Inc propaganda machine. I think it would be great to point out the true agenda of anyone who minimizes the scandal (as in, do they also write for RCC Inc mouthpieces, do they go to mass every Sunday, do they have family members who are clergy, etc.), and this is one wonderful start. This guy Stechschulte looks like a JPII catholic TOOL — he appears to be the right age. Yuck.

  6. (email sent to Mr. Stechschulte)

    Mr. Stechschulte, you WERE a Copy Editor at The TimesHerald, but your CURRENT POSITION is:

    Mike Stechschulte
    Managing Editor at The Michigan Catholic
    Auburn Hills, MichiganNewspapers

    Your reading public would appreciate this fact in order to evaluate your thoughts, position and current PERSPECTIVE on this matter.

    Michael Skiendzielewski
    Captain (retired)
    Philadelphia Police Dept

  7. Mike..mike…mike. Is he really paying attention? A good journalist closely examines and studies the
    subject. Is he reading “Mortal Sins”, watching documentaries like “Mea Maxima Culpa”, reading the
    stories of the grooming/assaults/manipulations/rapes on sites like, reading the volumes and volumes of documents/court records etc available to read??? The heartwrenching accounts that affect not only the victims but ripple outward to so many. AND the continuing minimizing/discounting/refusals to believe or to believe that it’s really that bad..the “get over & get on with it” mentality while not holding the priests and others accountable! Mike nees to do his due diligence and research this further before writing one more word.

  8. Nice job of tearing down his prefabricated PR fluff piece for the diocese. I wonder if his column was actually written by the St. Paul’s diocesan pr person?

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