Magisterial Fidelity
A Roman Catholic Mom from Boston

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Carol M. McKinley

Sunday, May 21, 2006 :::

Grab your granola and coffee and sit down - this is fascinating!

If these facts in the Globe are accurate, the testosterone is in full throttle over at Caritas Christi!

Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley last week decided to privately reprimand Caritas Christi Health Care System's president, Dr. Robert M. Haddad, for multiple instances of kissing and other physical touching involving four women employees, despite an investigation by senior Caritas Christi officials that concluded that Haddad should be fired, according to internal documents and e-mails obtained by the Globe.

It's as plain on the nose of anyone's face what's going on here...Obviously, all the female patients and employees do not know the proper names of their private parts.

This is a job for Rizzutto.

One of those stunned by the decision to rebuke but not dismiss Haddad is Helen G. Drinan, senior vice president for human resources at Caritas, who sent an e-mail Thursday to the board members in which she declared: ''I know what will befall this organization when the public learns that the Church in Boston has once again put the powerful predator ahead of the powerless victim."

Right in time for the healing Masses!

In all seriousness, perhaps Haddad is guilty of nothing more than being overly affectionate in hugging and kissing and lacks innate boundaries but the story sure has quite a trajectory.

This should be an interesting week in the press. Can you imagine the PR machines spinning ideas up at the digs? God help us all.

Donna Morrissey eat your heart out.

In a May 8 letter to O'Malley, Drinan said Caritas had ''always" fired other employees who have engaged in similar behavior.

Helen says she's "always" finding out that the employees the diocese hired turning out be predators upon women, it's something going on in perpetuity, says Helen.

Is Helen one of those nutty people who abhor affection and embark on a human resource crusade to purge the planet of hugging?

Drinan, who fielded the initial complaints about Haddad from women employees, elaborated on Haddad's behavior in an e-mail to members of the Caritas Christi board of governors on Friday, a day after they endorsed O'Malley's decision.

Haddad, she wrote, ''hugs subordinate female employees, kisses them on the lips, rubs them on the back, calls them late at night, and asks them about matters that are highly personal to them."

Check this out:

She also said that, even during the course of the investigation, Haddad continued to behave inappropriately, citing a report from Peter Holden, president of the Caritas hospital in Methuen, that Haddad ''was observed to be winking and leering" at one of the four women complainants a week earlier.

The poor laddiebuck.

Drinan, in another e-mail to the board, accused O'Malley of improperly interceding in the investigation to help Haddad, giving him advance notice of the probe, providing him with an adviser, and telling of the reprimand before consulting with the Caritas board. The cardinal's actions ''have made a mockery of the investigation. It is nothing short of shameful," she wrote.

I don't know what's going on with Haddad or Drinan for that matter. Seems to most sane people that the folks the diocese hires who wind up crossing appropriate touching boundries are only half as nutty as the people the diocese hires to solve their touching problems.

The whole environment is polluted and, bottom line, this is the exact problem mothers and fathers have with "who" and "what" the diocese is using to "protect children".

It's mental.

As far as many of us are concerned, nobody that has anything to do with the diocese should be talking to children about what kinds of touches feel good. The diocese is infested with people they've recruited that don't have right judgment about touching. The diocese does not have right judgment about the people they recruit. When other people observe the people they've recruited taking part in behaviors or we come to find out they're involved with activities that could put people into predatory situations and they take the situation to superiors, they're given advisors, lawyers, psychiatric help and policy manuals and we're all left to find the truth in the spin between the Pilot and the Globe.

There's an unspoken expectation that everyone will sweep it under the rug because telling about it, isn't "holy".

As time marches on, eventually everyone is going to learn that nothing has changed, except for the fact that the people the diocese recruits are being appointed to tell children which touches are good ones.

The absurdity is astounding.

Stephen B. Perlman, the cardinal's outside counsel on the issue, took issue with Drinan's view of the case. He said it was appropriate for O'Malley to see if Haddad would accept the penalty before he took his recommendation to the board. Perlman said he did not know whether O'Malley alerted Haddad in advance.

Perlman, who is an employment law specialist at the law firm Ropes & Gray, said that in his opinion, Haddad's behavior did not warrant termination. And he said that, in the prior cases cited by Drinan of employees who had been fired, those terminations were not justified and were ''draconian."

Hugging and kissing, Perlman said, can range from sexually predatory behavior to ''effusive, friendly warmth that is nonetheless unwelcome." Haddad's misbehavior, he said, falls into the latter category. Perlman also said he did not consider the behavior illegal.

Helen is a nutcase says the diocese. I'm not sure that's believable after reading her letters, but fascinating nonetheless.

Helen's letter to the Cardinal

Helen's letter to poor Fr. Kickham who'll have to respond with drivel.

The Chancery response

Over the course of her communications on the matter, Drinan's tone evolved from one of deference and faith -- ''I have prayed for guidance and direction. I want to do the right thing," she wrote O'Malley -- to ominous warnings of what it could mean for the church if Haddad were not dismissed.

Drinan said ''perhaps most troubling" was what she called the ''near absence" of concern for the women complainants that she said was shown by the church hierarchy.

But the statement issued by the archdiocese says that outreach to the four women is underway, now that the case has been resolved.

Hang on ladies, Barbara Thorpe is on her way!

In her May 8 letter to O'Malley, addressed, ''Dear Cardinal Sean," Drinan's tone begins as deferential, but later she writes: ''This is no longer a matter for me of what the law requires of me in my job, because I have satisfied that obligation; it is now a matter of my conscience and responsibility as a person who does indeed believe in Christ's teaching.

''I cannot stand aside or participate," she continued, ''in an effort to protect the institution and its powerful leader [Haddad] as priority over compassion for those injured by shameful and inexcusable conduct."

The story goes on to state that Haddad had also been verbally warned in the past that he was crossing borders that several women found invading enough that they called the Human Resources Dept of Caritas.

These are fun paragraphs:

''What do you tell the next guy who's brought up on similar charges? What do you tell the next woman who is hassled in a sexual manner by someone in a position of power? Do you tell her, 'Don't complain about it. We consider powerful guys to be too important?' "

You say If you complain, we'll talk to the offending party. If it becomes clear that talking to the man about his boundries resulted in the same behavoir, and more complaints come in, we'll put together a committee to review the facts. They'll make a recommendation that the individual be fired. If the Cardinal doesn't like that recommendation, he'll get another committee to make another recommendation about the first recommendation. As the Cardinal goes on a crusade to find a team who'll tell him to do something he intended to do all along, when it happens, he'll pass that recommendation onto the Boards of Wizards, who'll approve it. We'll all pass out the policy manual written and signed by the man transgressing the policies and hire another committee to investigate the envirnoment to spin out a study that declares it as safe. We'll tell the man if the women come to them complaining that their work environment is threatened and they are being retaliated against, they'll do something about it, whilst as they speak, the individual is at the women's place of work leering at them with smiles on his face. Good day to Madams.

That's what the RCAB is telling the women.

The same terms are repeated in the Caritas Christi sexual harassment policy, which describes sexual harassment as including ''unnecessary touching of an individual, e.g., patting, pinching, hugging, repeated brushing against another person's body." The policy is signed by Haddad.

That's not the worst part. Someday soon, we're all going to open up the Globe to find that Barbara Thorpe has rented a minivan, picked up the women and drove them to a healing Mass at St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Brighton.

Anyhoo-enjoy your day!

::: posted by prolife pundits at 7:44 AM




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