Saturday, December 6, 2014

BREAKING THE REIGN OF SILENCE

From today's PDN article:


  • Lowell D. Lacy ·  Top Commenter
    There's been no doubt that this would not be investigated at the local level. Such investigation has to be done at a higher level than from here on Guam. While I have a tendency to believe Mr. Toves, he has gone about this completely wrong by not bringing forth the supposed victim. His having not talked to the alleged victim and merely having suspicion without a witness or documentation just isn't going to fly. Mr. Toves you need to produce proof!
    • Tim Rohr ·  Top Commenter · Hagatna
      He has tried off and on for years, others as well. However, everyone close to the victim is aware of the dangers of pulling him back to a moment that caused him to attempt suicide and cost him over a decade of therapy. Mr. Toves knew how hard to push and when to stop. There is also the added problem of the old mentality of going up against the clergy, particularly a bishop. Sadly, parents would sometime prefer to let their children be molested (and some men let their wives be slept with - I know about that too) than call out a "man of the cloth". Only in the church can men get away with such things which is why there are several levels of hell, the floor of which is "paved with the skulls of bishops" (to quote a Church Father). Mr. Toves is throwing himself at the problem in the hopes that he can break the "reign of silence". Already some have come to speak with him privately. He is assembling the stories and sending them to Rome as promised.

7 comments:

  1. I knew little about the Catholic Church on Guam until this summer, but from reading, it appears SNAP was on the island 4 years ago and although many came forward to SNAP they remained anonymous for many reasons and little was done. Perhaps it is time for someone from Rome to come to the island and document the abuse while allowing the victims to remain anonymous. Or perhaps if one person has the courage to come forward, it will encourage others to come forward, as is happening in the Bill Cosby case. Unfortunately most people are afraid to come forward and afraid people will not believe them when dealing with clergy and celebrities. Also unless privacy can be assured, they know they will be prominent in the news and not everyone wants that much publicity.

    Where there has been so many years and sources of smoke, there must be fire.

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  2. I also find it troubling that Mr. Toves has not asked his cousin permission to bring forth this complaint on his behalf. Sooner or later someone is going to leak Mr. Toves' cousin's name and he and his relatives will be devastated. When I disclosed being a victim of incest to my mother to protect my sister from the same fate I begged her not to tell anyone. She then promptly told my 3 brothers and I felt further violated and humiliated. I worry for Mr. Toves' cousin's mental health. His cousin did not ask to be sacrificed for "a greater objective."

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for bringing this up so we can clarify. The victim's name is known to many. His family has known from the beginning. In fact, I thought everyone knew since I've heard the story so many times from so many people. The Archbishop is constantly linked to "the two boys in Agat" and the name of John Toves' cousin.

      As many times as I’ve heard these stories I have always shrugged them off, not just because they were old, but because I understand how people, even the victims, might just want to let it go. I also understand the families wanting to leave the past the past.

      And as we know, this is exactly what happened…until Apuron started grossly mistreating people. My first thought after I learned of how he treated Fr. Paul was “doesn’t he know what this could lead to?” I was shocked that he gave Fr. Paul nothing to lose. I was shocked not just because leaving him nothing to lose was so vicious but also because it was bad strategy.

      Didn’t he know Fr. Paul had friends? Didn’t he know that, with nothing to lose, Fr. Paul might call on those friends, or even if he didn’t call on him, they’d come to help him. Didn’t he know that there were “stories” out there that had lain dormant for years but might still awaken?

      I thought the same when he ambushed Msgr. James. Not that either Msgr. James or Fr. Paul are vindictive, but that someone somewhere who knew “these things” would shake off their slumber and go after Apuron?

      This is exactly what happened. John left a comment on my blog about Apuron’s molestation of a seminarian. However, he left it anonymously at first so I didn’t post it. I have tons of such comments all left anonymously and all left unpublished.

      When I didn’t publish his comment, John anonymously left another comment asking me why. I told him. I don’t publish allegations against someone unless the person making the allegations is willing to use his or her name and take full responsibility for the comment. John replied back with his name. And the rest is what we see unfolding.

      Also, before John went public, he sent a letter to the Archbishop. As usual the Archbishop did not respond. So John decided to go public, and he has. John has absolutely everything to lose and absolutely NOTHING to gain in this. He is asking nothing for himself. He is here on Guam taking time away from his business and his clients. He is losing money every day he stays here.

      I can relate with the question of John’s motivation. Many have questioned mine as well. Some say I’m in it for the money (LOL), the fame (LOL), or I have a personal bone to pick with the Archbishop (NOT). They can’t figure me out. They can’t figure me out because they can’t imagine someone taking the time and the risk doing what I am doing simply because it is the right thing to do. Simply because no one else is standing up to this bully. Simply because a gross injustice is occurring and most of the people on this island are more concerned about upsetting family members than doing the right thing.

      Well I don’t care about upsetting anyone. Standing up to this bully is the right thing to do and I am doing it and will continue to do it. And John is doing the same. Maybe one day others will join us. Maybe one day.

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    2. A bully crying out "persecution," LOL.

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  3. Fr.Matthew Blockley.December 6, 2014 at 8:28 PM

    I do believe the Catholic community of Guam needs to join together and break the silence of a dictatorship which has governed on fear and revenge. The faith of our Church is built on the love, the mercy, compassion, and forgiveness of a gracious and loving God .Mercy and compassion. The leadership of the Archdiocese amounts to nothing more than a dictatorship. Only the people of Guam, those born to the land of Guam, that carry the blood of Guam, can stand up and stop the oppression. Some of us are only foreigners that have reasons to help, but the final removal of any dictator comes when the people are free to speak and join together to say enough is enough a new leadership is required.Only the people of Guam can now rise and reclaim their church.

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  4. Need to add this to clarify the former reply....The decades of bullying with such impunity has got to stop. The NCW are just trying to harass the mass faithful from bringing the truth to light.

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  5. Fr.Matthew BlockleyDecember 7, 2014 at 7:47 PM

    So many people lost their inner peace of mind because of the threats and bullying. For me it was 15 years of trauma caused by this leadership. Is it any wonder I join the United People of Guam in working for a better future for the entire pacific church.

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