As Diocese Prepares to Pay Victims, its Primary Source of Money: Parishioners

April 16, 2018
Parishioners pack a Mass at All Saints Church in Lockport in this Feb. 3, 2008 file photo.  The Catholic Diocese of Buffalo Bishop Richard J. Malone says donations to Catholic Charities annual fundraising drive are not being used to compensate clergy sexual abuse victims. But donations from parishioners throughout the diocese are used to pay insurance premiums and settle insurance claims. (File photo/Harry Scull Jr./The Buffalo News)
Donations from parishioners throughout the diocese are used to pay insurance premiums and settle insurance claims. 

Bishop Richard J. Malone assures donors that no gifts to Catholic Charities will be used to settle clergy sexual abuse claims.

But area Catholics – one way or another – are paying.

To compensate sex abuse victims, Malone said the diocese will rely on insurance coverage, investment reserves and the possible sale of property, all of which trace back to the wallets and pocketbooks of people in the pews.

The diocese’s self-insurance plan and its premiums for excess liability coverage are funded primarily by contributions from parishioners. Its investments grew out of parishioner gifts. And its buildings were constructed, purchased or donated thanks to the generosity of Catholic donors.
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