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Father Carmen Sita

I received an email from a reader with a link to the Boonville Daily News Website. The story was about the arrest of Gerry Howard also known as Carmen Sita. Mr. Howard has a long history of sexual abuse of children while serving as a Catholic Priest. The story of Mr. Howard is especially heinous in that he was moved by the Archdiocese of Newark to a “facility” in New Mexico and then moved to a parish in Missouri after he changed his name. You can read all the details in my original post on this particular low life.

The article by Nate Brit of the Boonville Daily News reads as follows:

Boonville –

An ex-Boonville priest suspected of sexually assaulting three mid-Missouri men in the 1980s has been taken into custody in New Jersey, Cooper County Prosecutor Doug Abele said today.

The suspect, Gerald Howard, was arrested with the help of the Bloomfield Police Department in New Jersey and the Boonville Police Department, Abele said.

A $1.5 million bond has been set, he said.

Howard is expected to be charged with three counts of forcible sodomy, three counts of attempted forcible sodomy and two counts of kidnapping, Abele said. Howard could face 5 years to life in prison if convicted on the sodomy charges.He could face 5 to 15 years if convicted on the kidnapping charges.

Howard once worked as a priest at Ss. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Boonville.

The prosecutor’s office is not naming the three alleged victims — identified in court documents as John Doe 1, John Doe 2 and John Doe 3 —  to preserve their confidentiality, Abele said. Their names would become public if the case goes to trial and they are asked to testify, he said.

Former Boonville resident Mark McAllister claimed in August that Howard sexually assaulted him repeatedly during the 1980s while he was an attendee of the Boonville parish. He won a $600,000 settlement in connection with those claims in the fall.

McAllister claimed Howard as having worked at Ss. Peter and Paul and as having taken him on trips to places such as New Jersey.

The Cooper County Sheriff’s Department also participated in the investigation, Abele said.

Decisions about which charges to file had to be made based on laws that were in effect at the time the crimes are suspected of having occurred, Abele said. That meant consulting Missouri statutes in effect in 1983, 1984 and 1985, he said.

Judge Robert Koffman on Monday reviewed the grand jury’s recommendations Thursday in Cooper County. Koffman authorized the warrant that has been issued for Howard’s arrest, Abele said.

Capt. Don Smith of the Boonville police said the Sheriff’s Department launched the investigation into Howard in September and later transferred the case to Boonville police.

Bloomfield police took Howard into custody at his apartment today, Smith said. It was their first attempt to make contact with him.

The link also lists other related stories about this monster.

The next thing that needs to happen is the prosecution of those that knowingly moved this predator from New Jersey to Missouri by way of New Mexico. The giving and receiving Diocese should both be held criminally liable for their complicity in hiding this predator.

Related Post: Catholic Pedophile Protection/Relocation Program Story

Related News Stories:

NJ.com – Jersey City ex-priest, guilty in 1982 of sexual assault, charged in Missouri 1980s abuse cases
ABC 17 News – Former Boonville Priest Indicted on Sex Charges
Columbia Missourian – Former Boonville Priest Arrested on Sodomy Charges
Missourinet – Former Boonville Priest Arrested on Child Molestation Charges from the 1980’s
Columbia Daily Tribune – Former Boonville Priest is Arrested

Kelly from Marquette, can you send me an email. I need to ask a question from a reader and find out the status of your blog.

Father Timchak case is in pre-trial discovery. I will get updates as soon as they are available.

“Gabriel Posenti” is an interesting psuedonym for social networking sites.
St. Gabriel Possenti was a Catholic seminarian whose marksmanship and proficiency with handguns single-handedly saved the village of Isola, Italy from a band of 20 terrorists in 1860. He is also the Patron Saint of “Handgunners”. What do you think, Dave? Should I keep digging?

I have received some feedback on the campaign to reply to Pope Benedict XVI’s letter to the Irish people (Dear Mr. Ratzinger: Letters from Ireland, ). Some have enthusiastically embraced the idea and plan to write a note to the Pontiff to express their opinion of his prose to the Irish nation. Others think it is a bad idea because, in their opinion, it does not move the ball forward. Some initially embraced the idea and then had a change of heart. I respect all these positions and, believe me, I understand that, for some people, writing a letter to the Pope may only lead to frustration and despair.  I will not question the decision of any survivor to support or not participate in this campaign.

I am willing to write a letter for a couple of reasons. First, I think when voices, or in this case letters, are brought together they send a message. The message here is that the pastoral letter from the Pope was an exercise in deflecting responsibility for the sexual abuse crisis in the Catholic Church, specifically in Ireland and generally around the world. This is a method of protest to inform the Holy See that more affirmative and genuine action is needed to deal with the crisis worldwide.

I personally believe that writing a letter, expressing my concern, displeasure, and outrage at the Vatican policy of simply brushing this crisis off as a thing of the past will be cathartic for me.

That said, I have no illusions that the letters will get past some low-level Vatican bureaucrat working for some harried monsignor in the Holy See’s mail room. I have no illusions that anyone above the rank master altar boy at St. Peters will actually read my letter. I do not expect an answer from a Vatican official, Cardinal or the Big Guy himself. I will not be crushed two months from now when I have no overseas letter with some cool pontifical postage affixed. I am simply adding my humble missive to the universe of other letters that will be posted on 15 May in hopes that the numbers of letters arriving at the Vatican City Post Office are of a quantity large enough to merit a whisper in the halls that there is a lot of mail coming in and that people in Ireland and the rest of the world are tired of the Pope doing everything but the right thing in dealing with the sexual abuse crisis. Perhaps enough letters will arrive to warrant at least a sampling of letters to determine the sense of outrage over the Pope’s leadership deficit and the Holy See’s inability to grasp the magnitude of displeasure in the handling of these abuse cases.  Whatever happens, the act of writing and mailing the letter is enough for me (it seems oddly poetic that I will put my letter in the box at the Post Office on Battlefield Boulevard). 

I can apply the same reasoning for mailing a letter to the Pope that I do to publishing a post on this blog.  I write it for myself. I am doing so to exorcise a demon, to be a voice for change and to help myself get to a point where I feel I have done what I can for myself.  If it is read by others, that is fine.  If it helps one other survivor deal with the “great terrible secret”, I consider that a major win.  If I educate someone along the way, all the better.

When I asked the leadership of SNAP to endorse the “Dear Mr. Ratzinger” campaign, the response I received was that it was not seen as a productive way to effectively communicate SNAP’s message or advance the cause of victims of clerical abuse. The SNAP leader who replied indicated that he , in concert with others, did not see how it could help, so they were going to pass on supporting the idea.  I was not surprised.  I am unsure about SNAP’s willingness to operate outside the comfort zone established by the organization’s leadership. They seemed to be committed to a model that is more restrictive in the types of actions that they will endorse or embrace.  I would think that they would support any effort, that was not harmful to survivors, to bring attention to the lack of a focused effort on the part of the Catholic Church to deal honestly with the sexual abuse crisis.  In the end, it is what works for the individual that matters to me. 

For me, writing the letter is a good thing.  My voice joins with those of others, survivors and supporters alike, and sends a message that we are not standing idly by.  I am not trusting that those anointed by mortals are keeping the best interest of children and vulnerable adults at heart.  The hierarchy of the Catholic Church has failed us all, repeatedly, for generations.  I will not pass up an opportunity to voice that sentiment and send it into the world.  If it falls on deaf ears, so be it.  I will keep stirring the pot. 

Calculate your postage for a letter to Vatican City at the U.S. Postal Service Website.

I have a new hero in Ireland. Her name is Emma Somers. She is a free-lance writer and she has come up with the most elegant and simple way to reply to Pope Benedict XVI’s letter to the Irish people regarding the sex crisis in the Catholic Church. We are all going to drop him a line, compose a letter, fire off an email, send an epistle, you choose the form it takes as long as the message is sent. I know this is starting as an Irish initiative, but I would like to see a more international effort  supporting Emma’s campaign.  This is a show of support for Ireland’s concerned movers and shakers who are done with the abuse committed by clergy and covered up and denied by the hierarchy of the Catholic Church.  This is a show of support for survivors worldwide. This is a pontifical “WAKE-UP” call to the Holy See.

Emma’s WordPress Blog is called “Dear Mr. Ratzinger: Letters from Ireland“.  The rules are simple (I hope she forgives me for cutting and pasting):

No 1: Read the pope’s letter

Please do not post a response unless you have read the pastoral letter from the pope — or at least the parts directed at you (eg victims, young people, parents, etc). It is posted here.

No 2: Write your reply

It may be one line, it may match the pope’s 4,000 words — either way, you can get your message across. Feel free to borrow from other letters here if you have trouble articulating your feelings.

No 3: Share your reply

If you are comfortable sharing all or part of your reply, please post it as a comment on “Dear Mr. Ratzinger“. Your letter may inspire others to put pen to paper.

No 4: Post  your reply on Saturday 15th May 2010

 
This is the most important part. DO NOT FORGET TO POST OR EMAIL YOUR LETTER! For the biggest impact, we will send our letters on the same day and show the Vatican Ireland cares about victims of clerical child abuse.

Note: (For you Americans out there, Post=Mail, find a stamp and mail the thing)

Participants are invited to meet at the GPO on O’Connell Street, Dublin, at 2pm on Saturday 15th May to post our letters as a group. (If you would like to be sent a reminder for this, please email dearmrratzinger@gmail.com with ‘Reminder GPO’ in the subject line. Your email will not be passed on or used for any other purposes.)

If you can’t make it to the GPO, all you need to do is post or email your letter before 5pm on Saturday 15th May. (Again, for a reminder, please email dearmrratzinger@gmail.com with the word ‘Reminder’ in the subject line.)

Address for letters: Pope Benedict XVI, Apostolic Palace, 00120 Vatican City
-or-
His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI
00120 Via del Pellegrino
Citta del Vaticano

Address for emails: benedictxvi@vatican.va

No 5: Spread the word

Please pass “Dear Mr. Ratzinger: Letters from Ireland” on to anyone you know who might be interested in having their voice heard or help friends and family who are not online to get involved in the campaign.

Consider this “Spreading the Word”!  I need a Canadian and an Australian to get the word out in your neck of the woods. 

For those of us that can’t make it to the GPO in Dublin on the 15th because of lack of funding, expired passports, or Icelandic volcanos,  I recommend similar gatherings at post offices around the world.  Talk amongst yourselves and come up with an appropriate location, preferably near a mail box, post box, container approved by your local postal authority or free WiFi hotspot.   

If you are going to meet, let me know where and when and I will spread the word.

Why are you still reading this?  Go to Emma’s Blog, Dear Mister Ratzinger: Letters from Ireland, you have reading and writing to do.

There are times when I am just amazed at the sheer stupidity of all this. On the one hand you have the Vatican spin machine trying to simultaneously say that all is well, nothing to see here, the Catholic Church is under attack or just ignore the man behind the curtain. On the other hand, everyday there is news of another child abused, another priest credibly accused or a bishop (even the Bishop of Rome) covering up some heinous criminal act to “protect the mother church”. Who are you going to believe, the Pope or the overwhelming evidence all over the world?

There has been so much material to read on claims and denials, pedophiles and protectors, victims and statutes of limitations in the past few months that I have had a hard time sorting through the sheer mass of information.  In one way it is good that the flood gates are open, but the enormity of the crisis is just overwhelming.

The Church, in order to make this all go away, is dependent on the blind and absolute loyalty of the “faithful” sitting in the pews for each performance of the Sunday Morning Magic Show. Parishioners lament the horrible stories of abuse and yet they do little or nothing to hold their church accountable. I have seen more people justify staying in the pews because the “faith was ingrained in them from a young age”. Really?! People were indoctrinated as children to support a church that has long ago stopped being about faith, devotion, good works, forgiveness and grace should stick to it because they grew up with the “Faith”. What was it P.T. Barnum said about suckers?

Up until this point I have resisted the urge to question the faith of Catholics. I have tried to be respectful of those who are still active in the church. Some of these people pray for me. Some of them, pretty close in the family tree, are quick to tell me that I am “obsessed with this”. Funny how the people saying that know almost nothing about me, but they are instantly predisposed to telling me to come back to the “faith”, to let this all go and forgive all past transgressions. My translation of that is that these people want me to stop questioning an obviously flawed and seriously dangerous organization that can’t seem to grasp the ideas of protecting children, admitting past crimes, dealing with survivors with respect and compassion, and turning over credibly accused priests, when appropriate, to the legal system. The concept of truth has gone out of the equation. If you support the Catholic Church, you are complicit, willingly or not, in the continued attacks on survivors seeking an accounting for criminal activity that is no longer in dispute. The Catholic Church, from the Holy See to the little chapel at Notre Dame High School has lost any claim to moral authority. The laity needs to take control of the church and dismiss the hierarchy that has firmly established the codes of silence, intimidation and secrecy. If parishioners do nothing, they are passively supporting the status quo. They are allowing children to be targeted and they are allowing bishops to shield pedophile priests from prosecution.  On a side note, they are using parishioner money to hide these monsters.  Is that a good use of your contributions?

If you go back to the beginning of this blog you will find that my spouse very prophetically told me that once I starting digging into all of this I would be disappointed in people who I had trusted. Sad to say, she was right. Horribly, terribly, agonizingly right. I have also been told that I am throwing rocks at the church. The meaning of which is that none of this is healthy for me, it isn’t advancing me towards some sort of healing, resolution or resignation. I guess at this point I have decided I need to break some more stained glass windows before I am done.   Maybe I will start with this one …

Virgil Tetherow, Brad Tetherow, Father Gabriel, Mr. Oregon,whatever you want to call the convicted child porn connoisseur who is currently masquerading as a Catholic Priest at a schismatic “Roman Catholic Mission” in York, continues to enjoy the favor of a fringe group of misguided ultra conservative Catholics. One sent in a comment to an old post on this blog that is just too good to relegate to the obscurity of a comment on a post that is only read occasionally by those searching for information on the priest removed from ministry by the Diocese of Scranton.  His removal facilitated  after he pleaded guilty to charges related to the discovery of child pornography on church computers at St. Ann’s Parish.

The comment posted last night by someone using the name “Devoted Catholic” (mailto:fraeuli@gmail.com) goes as follows:  (I am not editing this submission, I am adding emphasis in the form of bolding where I found the writer’s comments particularly interesting.)

Before anyone goes ahead and sends that email to good Mr. Romeo, who knows Father and knows what was done to Father, take a moment to think about this. You read this web page which instructed you on what to think, feeding you a one-sided view of the situation. You were then told to email Mr. Romeo about what you think, or rather what you were just taught to think. Father was framed, and is willing to discuss the matter with any honest person who approaches him about it. The best priests are the ones who suffer the worst persecution by people who would like to stop them from serving God in such a holy way, people who put filthy images on their computers and whatnot. Think, someone could do that to you too. Get to know Father and you will see that he is simply too holy and too paternal of a priest to harm any of God’s children. It is the modernist priests who distribute communion to abortionists, active homosexuals, and adulterers whom you should be worried about letting your children be around. The scandalous modernist priest filth has to stop, and so does the one-sided gossip about good priests like Father by people who don’t even know him.

“Father was Framed!”  Stop the presses…  “Devoted Catholic”,   despite your protestations to the contrary, a guilty plea to charges related to child pornography in court is not “gossip”.  The fact that your “Mission” has a history of hiring disgraced priests with a penchant for sexual activity that involves children, either real children or photos of real children in inappropriate sexual positions is a fact.  Chairman Dave, Mr Romeo, D.W. Drew, Devoted Catholic and Father Gabe,( Gabriel, Bradley, Virgil, Mr. Oregon, whatever his manufactured name is this month) all know that this is not gossip, it is documented fact.  The gossip comes in when these low- life pedophile apologists start blaming the Diocese of Scranton (an organization that I particularly loathe) and the pastor of St. Ann’s at the time of “Father Gabby’s” conviction for the admitted offenses of this creepy priest.  (If you haven’t seen his Classmates.com photo and self aggrandizing write-up including his claims of publishing a book and being the pastor of a “Catholic Church” you should take a look to see the face of deceit).   I will  assume that the “best priests” try to keep their minds and hands out of children’s pants.

You claim that Father (oh, just pick a name) is willing to talk about how he was framed.  I am all ears.  I have stated in the past that I would be more than happy to give him a forum to clear his name if he had exculpatory evidence that would prove his claim.  If you can prove that the Diocese of Scranton conspired as part of a criminal enterprise to “frame” Father, bring it on, or let me send it to an investigative reporter with whom I am acquainted and let’s start the process of clearing his name right now.   The expected response from “Devoted Catholic” is that I don’t qualify as an “honest person” in the eyes of the Catholic Mission in York.  Alas, Chairman Dave and the rest of the “Ultimate Providers” in York remain entrenched in their fantasy world where all the problems in society have been caused by Vatican II, “modernist priests giving communion to abortionists, active homosexuals and adulterists” and liberals.  Jeeze, these guys are starting to sound more like a hybrid of the Westboro Baptist Church and a Michigan Militia.

Devoted Catholic, you have no idea what is in the heart of the man who was ordered to stop presenting himself as a Catholic Priest.  Your blind devotion to this convicted deviant is a testament to your inability to look at documented evidence, to include Tetherow’s guilty plea, and see that this man is not too holy and too paternal to get aroused by looking at photos of naked little children.  Go ahead and drink the Kool-Aid, bask in your obvious and pathetic ignorance and go on believing what you are told by Chairman Dave and Father “Kiddie Porn”.   You seem to be made for each other.  To the parents of York, Pennsylvania, you have a predator wearing clerical garb in your city.  BEWARE!  To the members of the Mission Cult in York Pennsylvania, if you want to keep bringing this up, I am more than willing to focus the spotlight on your self proclaimed “pastor”.

More posts on Father Tetherow can be found here:

Father Gabriel, Former Mr. Oregon?
A Few Last Thoughts on the Chairman of Sts Peter and Paul Mission’s Hateful Letters and Articles
Hey, I’m a Psyco-Blogger
Letters, we get letters…
The Friend of My Enemy is My Enemy
More information on Father Tetherow and his troubles at St Ann’s can be found at:

Scranton Times-Tribune article from February 12, 2005
Star-Ledger article from March 18,2005
Scranton Times-Tribune article from March 18, 2005

Copyright

This site is copyrighted by my statement.
Michael Baumann


Credit: Michael Baumann at "Off My Knees"

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