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Continued: Readers Write: (Oct. 19): Special education, Phyllis Kahn's orchestra proposal, the Catholic Church

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  • Last update: October 18, 2013 - 6:58 PM



Unpleasant coverage, but it’s the paper’s role

I disagree with the letter writers who complain that the paper’s coverage of the sex abuse scandal in the Catholic Church has been distorted, unfair and lacking in respect. We’re talking about possible criminal activity — both on the part of the priests who have been accused of abuse and on the part of a church hierarchy that has long tried to cover up the accusations and protect itself and the priests — and we’re not just talking about a few isolated cases.

One of the duties of a free press is to bring to light wrongdoing on the part of people in authority, be they politicians, government officials, CEOs or church leaders. The paper would be falling short in its responsibilities if it did not cover the scandal fully.


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If the facts and history were researched, the good done by the Catholic Church cited in an Oct. 17 letter was almost all initiated and done by nuns, not priests. They are the ones who established schools and orphanages; ministered to the poor; built the hospitals, colleges, nursing homes, retreat centers and missions, and worked as nurses, teachers and caregivers, often in spite of the priest and bishops in charge of the church and its resources, not because of them.

I studied with the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet at Derham Hall High School. I woke up to the real depth of the sisters’ contributions long ago, when I compared their collective efforts, just in the Twin Cities alone, to the likes of Andrew Carnegie and others like him ensconced as the great American benefactors. His and their contributions, however significant, appear small by comparison to the vision, compassion, hard work and accomplishments of these women around the world that affect every layer of society in almost every community.


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