Tuesday, March 14, 2023


“In 2016, Guam became the world’s leader on SOL reform when it simply erased child sex abuse SOLs backwards and forwards. The result is that nearly 50 Guam survivors have come forward so far and the dangers to children hidden from plain sight are coming into focus. Bishop Apuron and Fr. Brouillard have been sued by many. Even a woman has come forward, defying the false assumption that the abuse by priests is limited to boys.”


My Note: When then-Governor Eddie Calvo signed Bill 326-33 into law, his accompanying comments clearly indicate that he expected the law to be constitutionally challenged. 

"I recognize Bill 326 has several legal and technical concerns. A major concern is over the bill's retroactive application of the civil statute of limitations for child sexual abuse cases. Whether such retrospect will pass constitutional muster is unclear...Despite these questions, today I will err on the side of the aggrieved. If am wrong, then the courts will tell me so. Or perhaps the Legislature will craft new legislation in order to clarify these issues."

The challenge never came. 

Prior to Calvo's signing, there was a concerted effort by the archdiocese to convince Calvo to veto the bill. The effort came at the instigation of certain very competent lawyers. After Calvo signed the bill, I found it curious that the same "competent lawyers" did not mount a constitutional challenge to the bill in behalf of the Archdiocese.

Later, as the Archdiocese was preparing to succumb to bankruptcy, I (and others) again wondered why there was no challenge to the retroactive component to the legislation given the "several legal and technical concerns" the governor had already expressed upon signing. There seemed to be an open door.

But the people "on the Hill" remained silent. 

My guess is that the Archdiocese was in such turmoil at the time - Apuron going AWOL, Hon's fumbling, the insertion of a completely unprepared Byrnes into the hottest spot on the Catholic globe, and the almost daily drumbeat of new clergy sex abuse allegations - that Archbishop Byrnes simply folded.

But did Byrnes fold on his own or was he told to? Recall that Byrnes himself told us that he answered to Cardinal Filoni:

“Byrnes added that Filoni, as the prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, is something like his superior and that he reports to Filoni.”Guam Daily Post, Feb. 16, 2017

And while Filoni has since been removed as prefect, he wasn't removed until December 2019. The Archdiocese filed for bankruptcy in January 2019. 

Filoni was replaced as prefect by Cardinal Tagle, Archbishop of Manila, a prelate known to be friendly to Guam. Does Byrnes - or whoever is running this place - now answer to Cardinal Tagle? 

I don't think so. And the reason is this. There is no "chain of command" above a bishop. He doesn't work for a Vatican bureaucrat, not even the pope, and is only answerable - and only to the pope - in very narrow ways, usually in matters that only concern church teaching relative to faith and morals. 

This is what sounded "so wrong" when Byrnes told us he "reports to Filoni." We knew that the Kiko's were running Filoni - at least in Guam. Filoni is gone. Byrnes is pretty much gone. But Kiko isn't. And Gennarini - surprise - is suddenly here


  1. Hmmm... wonder what more havoc is Peppe gonna wreck here, smh