November 7, 2003

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel


Last Updated: Nov. 6, 2003

Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan is establishing a settlement fund of about $4 million for people who were abused by clergy as minors, and he has arranged for an independent mediator to design and manage a dispute resolution system he hopes church-wary victims will accept.

Dolan, the leader of nearly 700,000 Catholics in the 10-county archdiocese, announced those and other changes Thursday in interviews and in the archdiocese’s weekly newspaper, the Catholic Herald.

“I’m sure that some will continue to criticize what we are doing as either ‘too much’ or ‘too little,’ ” Dolan wrote in his Herald of Hope column. “I can only hope and pray that people see this as an honest, sincere attempt at justice, charity and compassion.”

The settlement money will come from the sale of buildings and land that was given to, or was purchased by, the archdiocese over the years. Dolan said in an interview that he picked a $4 million estimate because his financial advisers had estimated that the property would sell for $3.5 million to $4.5 million.

That will not involve property from closed parishes, he added.

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