TKC EXCLUSIVE AND BREAKING NEWS!!! WITNESS A DOCUMENT THAT DESCRIBES LONG STANDING SUSPICIONS OF KANSAS CITY CATHOLIC PRIEST CHILD SEX ABUSE!!!
Suspicions of child pr0n or sex abuse are no laughing matter . . . Unfortunately, the response from the local Catholic hierarchy on this matter are nothing but a joke.
So far, The National Catholic Reporter has taken local Catholic officials to task regarding their dismissive approach to a case involving accusations of child porn and a priest at a local Catholic School.
Today . . .
KICK-ASS TKC TIPSTERS PROVIDE AN IMPORTANT DOCUMENT DEPICTING CONCERNS ABOUT THE BEHAVIOR OF FR. SHAWN RATIGAN THAT ARE MORE THAN A YEAR OLD!!!
In fact, local concerned parishioners tell us "At the congregation meeting held last Friday the Principal confirmed to everyone in attendance that she had taken a list of concerns to the diocese over a year ago. From what others have said, she met with officials who didn't want to discuss them."
Tragically, sources close to the story note: "From what I can tell the school did everything they could but it fell upon deaf ears at the Diocese level."
Remember that our court system is based on the presumption of innocence . . . And Fr. Ratigan pleads not guilty to child porn allegations.
Nevertheless, the document AWESOME TKC TIPSTERS are reporting today shows us that THERE WERE WRITTEN CONCERNS DATING BACK MORE THAN A YEAR regarding the behavior of the embattled priest.
READ THE DOCUMENT IN ITS ENTIRETY . . .
I've highlighted a great deal of the letter. A lot of it is hearsay but all of it shows that people who knew Ratigan were worried . . . Especially, Julie Hess, principal of St. Patrick's school.
I've never heard the term "Circle of Grace" before, it sounds like something hokey the Church would devise but even using their own terminology it's hard to believe that Catholic leaders couldn't understand the important information that school officials were trying to get across.
HERE ARE SOME HIGHLIGHTS OF THE DOCUMENT:
Saint Patrick School
May 19, 2010
Concerns reported to Principal Julie Hess
"I seek to fulfill my responsibility as school principal in relaying a growing body of parent and teacher concerns regarding Pastor Shawn Ratigan's perceived inappropriate behavior with children. Parents, staff members and parishioners are discussing his actions and whether or not he may be a child molester. They have researched pedophilia on the Internet and brought in sample articles with examples of how Father Shawn's actions fit the profile of a child predator. I am worried about Father, about our school, and about losing our families to the negative impact of gossip and rumors."
"In accordance with the diocesan Children's Safety Curriculum, and in light of the priest abuse scandal in the Catholic Church and its devastating effects, I would recommend that priests across the diocese observe appropriate "Circle of Grace" physical boundaries for our children, instead of blurring and crossing those boundaries. We would expect Father Shawn to model, teach and practice the Child Safety guidelines across all settings in the church and in the school, and not insist that he has a right to "be close" to children or tell teachers that he knows the rules."
TKC NOTE: AGAIN, CHECK THE DATE AND REALIZE THAT THIS IS MORE THAN A YEAR AGO WHEN THESE CONCERNS MATERIALIZED:
"Although concerns about Father Shawn surfaced early in the school year, in the last week they have grown much stronger. The proverbial "straw that broke the camel's back" was reported to me by phone (I was in St. Louis) last Thursday, May 13, 2010. During a school field trip to Platte Falls, Father allowed a fourth grade girl to sit on his lap and lean her body back against him. He did not immediately move to re-direct her; she sat there for at least five minutes, until teachers moved to stand next to him. Then he rose and went to play Frisbee with a group of students."
TKC NOTE: THE "CIRCLE OF GRACE" CONCEPT IS DESCRIBED IN THIS PASSAGE . . . ALONG WITH A 1ST PERSON ACCOUNT OF RATIGAN'S RESPONSE TO CONCERNS ABOUT INAPPROPRIATE BEHAVIOR:
When he realized this situation was bigger than the thought, he called me over to the parish office and said it was just a "heads up" about rumors that were swirling around. When I mentioned that he had wanted to discuss a "teacher" issue, he told me that the first grad teacher, "who is not Catholic", interferes when students try to get close to him at recess. I explained our safety training and the importance of teaching physical boundaries and he "Circle of Grace" to out children. He interrupted to tell me that little children need to be touched and hugged, and even though "they" advised against it, he felt it was the right thing for kids. he said he would never hurt a child and all he wants to do is help them all get to heaven. At the end of the short conversation, he said that maybe he should just quit being involved in the school all together. I assured him that no one wanted that, and I wanted to say more, but I could tell it just wasn't the time."
TKC NOTE: PRINCIPAL HESS IS METICULOUS IN OUTLINING HER CONCERNS AND THOSE OF PARENTS AND TEACHERS . . . HERE'S ARE SOME OF THE PASSAGES I'VE PICKED OUT ALONG WITH HER METHODOLOGY:
"The concerns fall into several categories: 1) inappropriate physical contact with children; 2) inappropriate behavior; and 3) general concerns."
"When first grade Brownie Girl Scouts were planting flowers in Father Shawn's Home garden, a parent reported to me that her husband became "incensed" when he saw Father rubbing circles on his daughter's back. The dad immediately called his daughter over to him to get him away from Father and texted his wife that Father had better keep his hands to himself or there would be trouble . . . "
"In September, teachers expressed concerns about Father interrupting their classes, sharing inappropriate information with students, and not setting physical boundaries for himself with the kids. At the next faculty meeting, the teachers agreed to intervene and directly tell the children not to jump on Father, not to hang on his legs, and not to put their hands in his pockets any more . . ."
"In October, Father seemed to be "obsessed" -- as a staff member put it -- with one of the fifth grade girls. he was constantly talking about her, and wondering aloud to office workers, and teachers, "I don't know why so-and-so doesn't like me." He also described their conversations and interactions, as if other adults would be as interested in them as he was. Another staff member brought it up at a Parish Staff meeting as a concern, in terms of his apparent emotional involvement in the situation and the inappropriateness of his "peer-to-peer" relationship with the student." Teachers report that Father spends a great deal of time talking with the girls in that particular class, saying, "He's always talking to them." "
"They were somewhat disturbed with the inside of Father's home. "It's very kid-friendly," one mother said. "There is a big fish tank in the living room and stuffed animals all over the furniture." There is a giant stuffed animal on the bed in the guest room and the kitchen hand towels are shaped to look like doll clothes. The mother told me, "I got the willies all over." Earlier that day, this same woman had found a pair of girl's panties inside one of the planters in Father's back yard. She told me she's not sure if her daughters will attend any school field trips that Father goes on and that Father has raised the warning-bell instincts of numerous moms. She added that he's established no boundaries with kids "and it's clear he wants it to stay that way."
TKC NOTE: AGAIN COUNTLESS WARNINGS FROM TEACHERS . . .
"Father always wants to play with the kids in Physical Education classes. The P.E. teacher has told me that Father has no personal boundaries, the children flock to him, their hands are all over him, and their hands are in his pockets. Other teachers have had to step in and say to the kids "That's not appropriate!" and hoped that Father would get the hint.
Staff members have expressed concern that Father seems unwilling to find the time to meet with them to discuss parish issues; one in particular has tried numerous times to set up a meeting with him to no avail. They believe that Father spends so much time at school he isn't able to get other important things done. Father is at school every day for long periods of time. He is usually present at arrival time, during morning prayer, recess, lunch, dismissal, and after school. He also visits the early childhood center most of every day.