“We must make clear that we will not tolerate criminal and evil behavior, regardless of the rank and standing of the accused.” — Archbishop William E. Lori
The Archdiocese of Baltimore complies with Maryland laws requiring reporting suspected child abuse to civil authorities. Under Maryland Law any person who has reason to believe a child has been subjected to abuse must report the suspected abuse to civil authorities, even if the potential victim is now over 18 years old and even in cases where the alleged perpetrator is deceased.
If someone associated with the Church, including clergy, employees, or volunteers of the Archdiocese of Baltimore, is suspected of abuse, then the suspected abuse must also be reported to the Archdiocesan Office of Child and Youth at 410-547-5348 or the Victims Assistance Line at 1-866-417-7469.
If you have reason to believe that a bishop has engaged in child sexual abuse or other sexual misconduct*, or has interfered with an investigation into sexual misconduct, please click here or visit www.reportbishopabuse.org.
* Under Pope Francis’s Vos estis lux mundi and the Directives of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, the following forms of misconduct by bishops should be reported using this dedicated reporting system: 1) forcing someone, by violence or threat or through abuse of authority, to perform or submit to sexual acts; 2) performing sexual acts with a minor or a vulnerable person; 3) the production, exhibition, possession or distribution, including by electronic means, of child pornography, as well as by the recruitment of or inducement of a minor or a vulnerable person to participate in pornographic exhibitions; and 4) actions or omissions intended to interfere with or avoid civil investigations or canonical investigations, whether administrative or penal, against a cleric or a religious regarding the misconduct referred to in 1-3 above.
The Archdiocese of Baltimore is committed to ethical behavior and accountability. To make a report regarding violations of ethical behavior, visit the secure EthicsPoint site here.
Categories for reporting include: accounting/financial; confidentiality; fraud/theft; gifts/donations; harassment/inappropriate behavior; misuse of resources; workplace safety; child and youth protection and school safety.
The Independent Review Board, made up mostly of lay people and headed by Judge Joseph F. Murphy, is an interfaith group including representatives from the legal community and law enforcement, health care, academia and social work.
Board members review individual allegations of abuse and help shape archdiocesan child protection policies.
“They make sure that we actually live up to our policies … to make sure that we are living up to the promises of our policy and of the charter,” said Jerri Burkhardt, director of the Office of Child and Youth Protection for the archdiocese.
Retired judge of Maryland Court of Appeals, former Chief Judge of Maryland Court of Special Appeals and former Deputy State’s Attorney for Baltimore City
Former police commissioner of Baltimore City
Vice president, The Reginald F. Lewis Foundation, Inc.
Managing director, Beowulf Energy
Retired judge of the Circuit Court for Baltimore City
Pastor of St. Mary-St. Francis-Holy Family Catholic Community, Frederick County
Headmistress, Notre Dame Preparatory School, Towson
Chancellor of the University System of Maryland
Anti-human trafficking and exploitation program manager, Baltimore Child Abuse Center
Archbishop William E. Lori was a guest on WYPR’S “Midday” program, discussing the meeting of U.S. Catholic bishops in Baltimore and the Catholic Church’s response to the sexual abuse crisis. Click play on the accompanying video link.
Archbishop William E. Lori addresses preliminary report following an investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct and financial improprieties against Bishop Michael J. Bransfield, former bishop of the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston, W.Va. (June 7, 2019)
Bishop Adam J. Parker comments on the publishing of the names of 23 deceased priests added to the Archdiocese’s online list of clergy accused of child sexual abuse. (April 24, 2019)
Archbishop William E. Lori shares a Holy Week message with the people of the Archdiocese of Baltimore. (April 17, 2019)
Archbishop William E. Lori hosted a media briefing Jan. 15 at the Catholic Center in Baltimore to discuss the Archdiocese of Baltimore’s ongoing response to the clergy sexual abuse crisis. (Jan. 15, 2019)
In the wake of the recent meeting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops in Baltimore, Archbishop William E. Lori delivered the following special message via video and audio in parishes throughout the Archdiocese of Baltimore. (Nov. 17-18, 2018)
Archbishop William E. Lori discusses the Sept. 7 Day of Reparation to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. (Aug. 29, 2018)
Archbishop William E. Lori discusses the Church’s response to the ongoing sexual abuse crisis. (Aug. 29, 2018)
Archbishop William E. Lori discusses clergy child sexual abuse and accountability. (Aug. 14, 2018)
The Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, a comprehensive set of procedures established by the USCCB in June 2002 for addressing allegations of sexual abuse of minors by Catholic clergy, is marking its 15th anniversary. (Oct. 30, 2017)
Dr. Thomas Plante, a professor of psychology at Santa Clara University and adjunct clinical professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine, discusses misconceptions about clergy sexual abuse. Listen above.
Bishop Adam Parker speaks about the Archdiocese of Baltimore response to the clergy sexual abuse crisis. Listen above.
Archbishop Lori speaks about accountability during an Aug. 12, 2018 radio interview. Listen above.
Jerri Burkhardt, director of the archdiocesan Office of Child and Youth Protection, speaks about the charter for the protection of children in a Sept. 24, 2017 radio interview. Listen above.