Yesterday’s LA Times told the story of Edward Courtney, former Irish Christian Brother who is accused of molesting upwards of 50 kids. He’s living “under the radar” in Hawaii.
The bigger story is that EVERY cleric in Hawaii who has been accused of abuse (including former Bishop Joseph Ferrario) lives or has lived under the radar.
Why? Because unlike more than 30 other dioceses across the US, the Diocese of Honolulu and Bishop Larry Silva (pictured above) aren’t telling us who the perpetrators are.
These are men like:
- Former Honolulu Bishop Joseph Ferrario, who has been accused of abuse by at least two boys. When one of his victims came forward in the 1980s, the diocese said that according to an internal investigation, the accusations were “groundless.” The diocese’s sham investigation and repugnant treatment of the first accuser, David Figueroa, are well-known.
- George DeCosta, a retired priest who still runs retreats on the Big Island. Two civil suits have been filed against him, and he was reportedly forced to retire from the priesthood in 2002.
- Joseph Henry, who has been accused of sexual abuse by at least 18 boys. Although the diocese had known about Henry and his crimes for decades (Henry died in 1974), the diocese last November finally removed a plaque that named the hall at Kailua’s St. Anthony’s Parish after the serial child molester.
- Larry Spellen, who has been accused of abuse by at least two boys. After he was removed from ministry in 1993 by the Bishop of Salt Lake City, he moved to Orange County, CA, where he worked as a hospital chaplain (so much for that suspension) before he died in 2003. You’ll note in the obituary that he is survived by “two foster sons.” Does that remind you of anyone?
And what about the guys who are living “under the radar?” What about the 60 lawsuits? Who’s in there? What about the predators that the diocese knows about, but no victims have filed cases?
If a similar list from Seattle can unearth one guy living in hiding in Hawaii, how many men can a Diocese of Hawaii list expose?
Don’t you think that the public deserves to know?