Home/Stay Informed/All Diocesan Articles

All Diocesan Articles

Bishop Michael R. Cote, D.D. addressed parishioners throughout the Diocese in a pastoral letter read and/or distributed at all masses this weekend.  See letter below and links to the Office for Safe Environments Statement and webpage.

 

August 21, 2018
 

My Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

We are, as one family in Christ, heartsick over what we have learned in recent days and weeks from the Pennsylvania grand jury report and the accusations against Archbishop Theodore McCarrick.  These revelations have reopened the pain and sorrow of a spiritual crisis sadly not yet fully eradicated.  

As your Bishop and servant of our merciful Lord, I offer my deepest apology on behalf of the Church to the victims of child abuse and their families suffering painful life-long consequences.  I am grievously sorry for the horrific sins against the most vulnerable among us.  We pray as one united community of faith for healing.  

 

We condemn the abhorrent behavior of those who betrayed the trust of the Church and unthinkably violated the innocence of God's children.   

To be clear, the condemnation extends to any Church administrator, fellow bishop or official who failed to act decisively at the time to remove offenders from ministry and report them to authorities.  There are those close to the history of this scourge who would propose that Church administrators at the time were under-informed, misinformed and unprepared to manage the crisis at a time much less knowledgeable on the subject than today.  To those who would offer such a proposal, I borrow the words of a fellow Christian, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who knew that in a crisis of suffering, "the time is always right to do the right thing."  Those who were responsible within the Church to swiftly remove the offenders from ministry and did otherwise are to be held responsible no matter how many years or decades ago they sinned by not acting -- by not doing the right thing. We bishops included.

We in the Diocese will continue to follow an absolute zero tolerance policy toward those who committed crimes against God's children; and now the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops will expand the zero tolerance policy to include those who failed to act to prevent further occurrences.  This will mean a significant oversight role by the Laity, especially experts in law enforcement, psychology, and other relevant disciplines.  You will be hearing more from me as these new concrete measures begin to take shape.  You will be closely informed.  

Please know that there is no higher priority within the Diocese than the protection and spiritual welfare of our young.
The Diocese of Norwich continues our longstanding commitment to the support and healing of victim-survivors of abuse and reaffirms our commitment to protect our children, young people, and vulnerable adults from harm.  Attached is a brief update on the progress of the diocesan policies, protocols, and training concerning abuse prevention and the protection of children and young people.  For more information, please visit the website of the Office for Safe Environments:

 

https://www.norwichdiocese.org/Find/Diocesan-Offices/Safe-Environments

 


As we work together to fully overcome this crisis, we are strengthened to know that our faith through the power of God's love will overcome sin.  It is with resolve, prayer and the hope of Christ that we now embark on the path to renewal. As expressed by the Holy Father Pope Francis, “Through the baptismal grace the Holy Spirit has placed in the hearts of the faithful, may we grow in the gift of compassion and in justice committed to a culture of care that says ‘never again’ to every form of abuse.”

 

We stand together across this diocese in dedication to that pledge.

 

                                                                     Sincerely yours in Christ,

                                                          CoteSig-2012

                                                                     Bishop of Norwich

 
 
Office for Safe Environments Pastoral Attachment

 

 

 


Most Viewed Articles of the Last 30 Days

Calendar of Events

Posted on July 07, 2024 in: Events, Around the Diocese

22276

Diocese Celebrates the Ordination of Three Men to the Priesthood
On June 29, 2024, the Diocese of Norwich celebrated the ordination of three young men to the priesthood, marking a joyous event for the community. “You bring with you many gifts granted to you by God in His goodness,” said The Most Rev. Michael R. Cote, Bishop of Norwich, to deacons Eric Carl Hosmer, Julian Felipe Cuervo-Lozada, and Alexander James Pandolfe during his homily. “Put them to good use, always, for the glory of God and the good of His holy people.” Bishop Cote expressed deep appreciation to Mount Saint Mary’s seminary faculty ...

Read More

Clergy Appointments

Posted on July 01, 2024 in: News, Vocations

1931

Clergy Appointments
July 1, 2024 The Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D. D., Bishop of Norwich, has made the following clergy and diocesan appointments in the Diocese of Norwich   Reverend Henry Agudelo, from Parochial Vicar, Saint Brendan the Navigator Parish-Saint Joseph Church and Saint Mary Star of the Sea Church, New London, Saint Paul Church, Waterford, and Our Lady of Grace Church, Fishers Island, to Parochial Vicar, Saint Mary Parish, Clinton.                       ...

Read More

Faith and Freedom: Reflections on Independence Day
As the night sky explodes with vibrant fireworks and the tantalizing scents of barbecues drift through the air, Americans from every corner of the nation unite in celebration of the Fourth of July. For us, as Catholics, this day isn't just about national pride; it's a profound moment to delve into the intricate connection between our unwavering faith and the precious freedoms that define our lives. Cast your mind back to 1776, when the Declaration of Independence was boldly signed, proclaiming the inalienable dignity and rights bestowed upon every individual b...

Read More

Annual Blessing of the Fleet Returns to Stonington Borough
As Stonington has done for over 60 years, the St. Mary community will celebrate the annual Blessing of the Fleet. This is to honor present and past commercial fishermen, lobstermen and their families. The traditional celebration returns this year. THURSDAY, July 25 at 6 p.m.: The 2024 Blessing of the Fleet 5K Race is an in-person timed race through historic Stonington Borough. The certified course starts and ends at the Town Dock, 1 High Street, Stonington. You can also choose to register for a non-competitive 2-mile walk. Register today: www.runreg.com/blessingofthefle...

Read More

Pope Francis Asks Sacred Heart of Jesus to Convert Hearts Who Want War
Pope Francis prayed for the intercession of the Sacred Heart of Jesus on Sunday to convert “the hearts of those who want war” to projects of dialogue and peace. On the last day of June, a month that the Catholic Church dedicates to the Sacred Heart, the pope asked people to continue praying for Ukraine, Palestine, Israel, Myanmar, and other parts of the world where there is much suffering caused by war. Pope Francis also asked people to remember the suffering of persecuted Christians during his Angelus address on June 29.  “Tod...

Read More

Annual Catholic Appeal

ACA DONATE

English

Español

 

Recently Added Galleries
Click to view album: Mass of Ordination for Fr. Eric Carl Hosmer, Fr. Julian Felipe Cuervo-Lozada and Fr. Alexander James Pandolfe
Click to view album: Norwich Diocesan Council of Catholic Women (NDCCW) 46th Annual Layette
Click to view album: Nativity photos
Click to view album: Archbishop Kevin S. Randall - Episcopal Ordination, Nov. 4, 2023
Signup for Weekly Newsletter

     

    Roman Catholic Diocese of Norwich
    201 Broadway
    Norwich, CT 06360-4328
    Phone: 860-887-9294