Jesuits pay record $166.1 million in child abuse case – CNN

The Society of Jesus’ Pacific Northwest unit and its insurers have agreed to pay a record $166.1 million to about 470 people who were sexually and psychologically abused as children by Jesuit priests from the 1940s to the 1990s, the victims’ attorneys said Friday.Blaine Tamaki, an attorney in Yakima, Washington, described the payment as “the largest settlement between a religious order and abuse victims in the history of the United States.”The Oregon Province of the Society of Jesus is now in federal bankruptcy court in Portland, Oregon, the attorneys said. Insurers will pay $118 million, and the Jesuits’ Pacific Northwest province will pay $48.1 million, Tamaki said.”The $166.1 million is the largest settlement by a religious order in the history of the world,” Tamaki said. “Over 450 Native American children … were sexually abused repeatedly, from rape to sodomy, for decades throughout the Northwest. Instead of teaching these children how to read and write, Jesuit priests were teaching them distrust and shame.”Instead of teaching the Native American children the love of God, these Jesuit pedophile priests were molesting these young children,” Tamaki told reporters.The Rev. Patrick Lee, provincial superior of the Jesuits’ Oregon Province, declined to comment on the settlement, citing in a written statement the ongoing Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings.”The province continues to work with the creditors committee to conclude the bankruptcy process as promptly as possible,” Lee said.Jesuits are the world’s largest order of Catholic priests and are considered the most educated in the priesthood as they run prestigious universities, said Patrick Wall, a consultant to the victims’ attorneys and a former priest and Benedictine monk who’s now an expert on Catholic clergy abuse.Jesuits number about 19,000 worldwide, according to the Society of Jesus in the United States.The settlement also asks the Jesuits to provide a written apology to the victims, Tamaki said.

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