Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Church Refers Civil Lawsuit To Attorneys

The Archdiocese of Agana last week announced plans to file civil lawsuits against those who’ve been spreading “malicious lies” about the local Roman Catholic Church, as well as taking cases through the church’s own court system.

The announcement was made in a media release issued Friday. In the release, the archdiocese doesn’t clearly state who it specifically plans to take to court.

Pacific Daily News on Monday asked the archdiocese in an email questions regarding the civil suits and whether the charges will be related to slander and libel. The church on Monday said the matter has been referred to its attorneys.

“The media will have to be patient until the matter takes its course through its formal proceedings,” the church wrote in an email.

Friday’s media release addressed and refuted several claims made against the church and Archbishop Anthony Apuron over the past three years.

The church continued to dispute the allegations that Apuron had given away control of the Redemptoris Mater Seminary in Yona to the Neocatechumenal Way, a group within the Catholic Church.

Citing the deed of the property, which the church released to the public late last year, the archdiocese notes that the deed lists the church as the sole owner of the property. The church also defends the Neocatechumenal Way, arguing that five popes have approved the Way and more than 100 dioceses in the world, including Manila, have Redemptoris Mater seminaries.

Concerned Catholics

The church’s media release also addressed what it called “criminal sexual abuse” accusations directed at Apuron.

In recent weeks, the Concerned Catholics, a local group that has held protests targeting the archbishop, took out a full-page advertisement in the PDN that showed the back of a person wearing Catholic clerical attire and asked readers “Were You Sexually Abused? Molested?”

The ad also stated: “If you or someone you know was the victim of sexual abuse during these periods and at these locations, you no longer have to suffer in silence.”

Below the statement was a list of dates ranging between 1974 and 1984. The locations included Father Duenas Minor Seminary, Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish in Saipan, Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish in Agat and the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica.

The archdiocese said the Concerned Catholics’ ad targeted Apuron.

“This demonstrates that they have no proof to substantiate any allegations and that their purpose to confuse and mislead the people or, even, to induce some to bring false testimony,” the church wrote.
Days later, Vice Speaker Benjamin Cruz made the comment on a local radio station that Apuron instructed some senators to attach “poison pill” amendments to a bill he authored relative to helping victims of sexual abuse crimes come forward and file civil suits.

The bill in question, which was enacted in 2011 as Public Law 31-07, was a “window” measure, wherein victims of childhood sexual abuse who were then adults could have a two-year period to file civil actions against the individual that preyed upon them, suspending any statute of limitations.

While the church does call Cruz’s claims “outlandish” in the press release, it doesn’t deny that Apuron had any influence on the measure while it was being deliberated in the Legislature’s session.



  1. This outta put an end to all these hooplas. I say let the truth come out. All those involved will definitely have no where to hide and will have a chance to say their peace. May the truth prevail.

    1. Yes, hopefully this will all get settled. No matter what the truth is, you can count on the jungle to twist and gloat about the damage they have helped to inflict to our local Catholic Church.

      I wonder if they believe in Jesus Christ? Jesus' disciples, martyrs, saints have all embraced persecution and suffering; and likewise our Archbishop has quietly endured attacks on himself and the Archdiocese.

      Sadly, the jungle, ccog and lfm continue to display their selfishness to do their will and not God's will. They continue to demand that their Monsignor James be returned to the Cathedral and their Father Paul to be restored as pastor at Santa Barbara Church.

      Jesus built his church on Peter. Each successor of Peter, each Pope since Peter, were entrusted in taking care of the flock in love and obedience to Jesus Christ. And as the Catholic Church grew throughout the world, each Pope appointed bishops to help lead the Catholic Church in their local area. The Catholic Church is not a democracy. Bishops, with the help of the Holy Spirit, are entrusted to lead and make decisions for the good of the Church. Sometimes these decisions are unpopular as we now see these days. The fracas exhibited by the jungle, ccog and lfm are nothing new in the Church's history. These persecutions are necessary to purify the Church.

      And once the dust settles, I believe the Archdiocese will be a shining beacon of Catholic faith for not only Guam but all of Oceania. God's glory will be manifest in the missionary priests sent to the islands in need of men ordained to minister to the Catholic faithful. Courage, our dear Archbishop Anthony Sablan Apuron, courage!

  2. this affirms our purpose; our reasoning to pray for them for they have no peace in their hearts. Remain in the faith; Jesus rose for everyone.

  3. Guess the archdiocese better take back their press release now that a victim has come forward. Happy thoughts.

  4. one victim speaks more to come!

    1. Dear Anonymous at 11:37 am,

      You have more lined up???? I am not surprised. I suspected a conspiracy from the beginning.

  5. The truth has come out. I pray you refrain from disparaging the victim. Shame on anyone who knew this and used it to climb in status and favor.

    1. Dear Anonymous at 12:12 pm,

      In my country, a man is innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. I have always said that, and I still stand by that. The truth has not come out until it is determine in the courts.

  6. Yes, May, let the truth prevail.

    1. Dear Anonymous at 1:00 pm,

      My name is not May. Yes, the truth will prevail in this case with the Archbishop. I am sure that the Archbishop will continue to pursue the lawsuit.

  7. Diana...check out all the media outlets...your beloved is in hot water.


  8. Agree let this take due process through the civil court of Guam. This way the truth will prevail.

    1. Dear Anonymous at 3:04 pm,

      This is nothing new. Archbishop Apuron was not the exception. See my new post below: