philly.com [The Philadelphia Inquirer]
4 priests charged in sex abuse investigation
[ Three Roman Catholic priests in Philadelphia Archdiocese charged in investigation of sodomite rape, including two for sodomite pedophile rape; Roman Catholic Monsignor also charged with two felonies ]
Posted on Thu, Feb. 10, 2011
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Msgr. William Lynn, inset, faces criminal charges of failing to protect children from sexual abuse by two priests. He is pastor at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Downingtown. (Tom Gralish/Staff)
Monsignor William Lynn, former head of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia's Office for Clergy, has been charged for allegedly failing to protect children from sexual abuse by priests, District Attorney Seth Williams announced today.
Two felony counts of endangering the welfare were lodged against Lynn follow a grand jury investigation, Williams said at a news conference.
Williams also announced the Revs. [ CCL: sic ] Charles Engelhardt, 64, and Edward Avery, 68, and Bernard Shero, 47, a former 6th grade teacher at St. Jerome's School in Northeast Philadelphia, had been charged with raping and sexually assaulting the same boy in the parish between 1998, when he was 10 years old, and 2000.
Another priest, the Rev [ CCL: sic ] James Brennan, 47, is charged with raping and sexually assaulting a 14-year-old boy in 1996.
All five men were arrested today, official said.
Williams said Lynn, who was the Archdiocese's Secretary of the Clergy from 1992 to 2004, "supervised two of the abusers . . . knew they were dangerous and chose to expose them to new victims."
Since 2004 Lynn has served as pastor of St. Joseph's Church in Downingtown, a parish of nearly 4,000 families.
As head of the clergy office, Lynn oversaw all priest personnel issues, which included advising Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua and his successor, Cardinal Justin Rigali, on the assignment of priests; interviewing persons who reported sexual abuse by a priests; and overseeing the treatment of clergy known to have abused children.
In a message to church deacons, Rigali said he could not comment directly on the grand jury report because he had not yet received it.
But, he added: "I know the release of this report will be painful and my deep concern is for all of those who have been abused. I urge all the faithful of the Archdiocese to pray for, to extend every concern for and remain open to understanding the experience of the victims. It is in that spirit that we reflect upon the grand jury's actions and the recommendations they make."
Read and download the complete report here.