After a shooter killed two monks at Conception Abbey in June of 2002, the leadership at the abbey had to decide whether to disclose that they had knowledge of sexual misconduct by at least one member of its monastic community. Instead of doing the right thing, Abbot Gregory Polan and Mr. Daniel Madden misled the authorities.
Archive for Dan Madden
We have received tips and allegations of misconduct against several members of the Conception Abbey community including:
Since the news came that the Rev. Bede Parry has resigned from All Saints Church in Las Vegas and from the Episcopal priesthood, we have had statements mainly from Bishop Daniel Edwards and the Diocese of Nevada (here, here) a description of the process used to receive Parry’s orders, a news story from Episcopal News Service and timeline from the Office of Public Affairs. As the story has bubbled up a little on the main-stream media, and there is much discussion on the internet, it took over a week for the first substantive statements to come out.
The abbot learned that it’s best to make certain that no disagreement goes unresolved. A lack of forgiveness or inability to be forgiven can be among the most crippling of experiences.
The abbey says three precautions are now in place to guard against future abuse. Two of the precautions have already been implemented. The first is preliminary screenings for potential seminarians.
I learned a couple of things in the aftermath of that June morning in 2002 when an old man with a rifle opened fire in the hallways of Conception Abbey. The first was that dawn always follows darkest night; that even the most senseless of tragedies and deepest of pain will give way to unexpected blessings. The other thing I learned was how to manage national media coverage in the aftermath of a bizarre, headline-grabbing tragedy.
(St. Joseph News-Press) CONCEPTION, Mo. — The Rev. Philip Schuster and Brother Damian Larson finished their lives’ work Friday morning when their brethren solemnly took them to St. Columba cemetery, a short walk from their decades-long home — Conception Abbey.
(St. Joseph News-Press) Lloyd Jeffress was angry with the Catholic Church. “He was very bitter toward the church because of a divorce years ago,” said Sgt. Sheldon Lyon of the Missouri State Highway Patrol. “We believe that’s a good possibility of why he committed these acts.”
(St. Joseph News-Press) CONCEPTION, Mo. — A lone Missouri State Highway Patrol investigator, Sgt. David Merrill, is struggling to re-create the life of the formerly devout Catholic who went on a murdering rampage at Conception Abbey.
(St. Joseph News-Press) The monks of Conception Abbey have offered to participate in the funeral service of the man who killed their brothers Monday.
(St. Joseph News-Press) CONCEPTION, Mo. — For more than 1,500 years, Benedictine monks have welcomed the world through their doors. One 21st-century gunman isn’t going to change a tradition that’s survived the Dark Ages and wars.
Rebecca Summers, a spokeswoman for the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, which includes Conception, said church authorities had no reason to think the shootings were related to the sex abuse scandal that has shaken the Catholic Church.
(St. Joseph News-Press) CONCEPTION, Mo. — The Benedictine monastery located in the rolling hills of Northwest Missouri was founded in 1873 by the Rev. Frowin Conrad as a community for “ora et Labora,” a Latin phrase meaning prayer and work.
At age 70, beard white as snow, Father Hugh Tasch looks the part of the venerable old monk. But something has put the sparkle of a fresh-faced novice in his eyes.