Local Journalist Reflects on Milwaukee's Catholic Sex Abuse Scandal
Audrey Nowakowski of 'Lake Effect' interviewed Marie Rohde at Milwaukee Public Radio. The brief article includes links to shorter and longer versions of the audio.
"Reporter Marie Rohde’s work stretches back to 1980s, when she covered religion for the Milwaukee Journal. More than a quarter-century later, Rohde still writes about the issue as a freelancer, often for the independent National Catholic Reporter."It took a little while for this to become a local story.
"the case of Fr. William Effinger would be the first to make big headlines in Milwaukee. Effinger served at a number of parishes in Milwaukee and had been a serial abuser, with more than 150 child victims. It was discovered that the Milwaukee archdiocese knew about the abuse, but did doing nothing to warn potential victims or their families. Instead, like many abusive priests, Effinger was transferred around the city."Covering such a beat can take a toll, it appears.
"Having practiced Catholicism at the start of her career as a religion reporter, Rodhe says she is no longer a Catholic."The faith-shaking issue remains bishops who assert the problem was a priest could turn out to be a child molester, rather than acknowledge that they, or their predecessors, should have soon realized such priests should not be transferred around.
"'The abuse was horrible,' says Rodhe. 'But what was even more horrible, and that has never been addressed, was (the church's) role in it. And until that can happen it's not going to end.'"