MILWAUKEE, Wis. (WTAQ) - Wisconsin victims of priest sexual abuse told the Vatican Monday to stop criticizing them. Those victims want Pope Benedict to be held accountable, after revelations that he refused to remove a late priest accused of molesting 200 boys at a suburban Milwaukee religious school for the deaf. In his Palm Sunday sermon, Benedict said he would not be, “intimidated by the petty gossip of dominant opinion.”
That prompted the Survivors’ Network to hold a protest Monday in front of Milwaukee’s main cathedral. People held signs saying “I’m not petty gossip” among other things. Abuse victim Arthur Budzinski said he felt the same as he did when he was 12, when he tried to complain that a priest abused him and no one would believe him.
The pope has been under fire lately for his handling of sex abuse cases by priests in Europe while serving as a cardinal since 1980. The controversy expanded to Wisconsin last week, when court records showed that Benedict and an aide called off a trial against the late Father Lawrence Murphy and failed to defrock him.