In a forthcoming memoir, A Pilgrim in a Pilgrim Church: Memoirs of a Catholic Archbishop, former Milwaukee Archbishop Rembert Weakland, acknowledges he is gay and details his struggles with his homosexuality and the Catholic church.
The AP reports: "Weakland stepped down quickly after Paul Marcoux, a former Marquette University theology student, revealed in May 2002 that he was paid $450,000 to settle a sexual assault claim he made against the archbishop more than two decades earlier. The money came from the archdiocese. Marcoux went public at the height of anger over the clergy sex abuse crisis, when Catholics and others were demanding that dioceses reveal the extent of molestation by clergy and how much had been confidentially spent to settle claims. Weakland denied ever assaulting anyone. He apologized for concealing the payment...The revelations rocked the Milwaukee archdiocese, which Weakland had led since 1977. But when he publicly read a letter of apology for the scandal, Milwaukee parishioners gave him a a standing ovation...Weakland, who has been a hero for liberal Catholics because of his work on social justice and other issues, will also address in the memoirs his failures to stop abusive priests. In a videotaped deposition released last November, Weakland admitted returning guilty priests to active ministry without alerting parishioners or police. Advocates for abuse victims said that Weakland's cover up of his own sexual activity was part of a pattern of secrecy that included concealing the criminal behavior of child molesters."
The Publishers Weekly review and a report from Wisconsin's WLUK, AFTER THE JUMP...
Via Publishers Weekly: "When Weakland resigned as Milwaukee archbishop in 2002 after
revelations of a past homosexual relationship and a confidential
payout, it was seen as another stunning episode in the unfolding clergy
abuse scandal. It was especially painful to liberal Catholics who
viewed Weakland as their champion. Weakland was publicly penitent, but
other events that year—chief among them the resignation of Cardinal
Bernard Law in Boston—made Weakland's drama a footnote. With this frank
and well-told memoir, that's no longer the case. A Benedictine monk,
Weakland is up front about his homosexuality in a church that preferred
to ignore gays, and about his failures in overseeing pedophile priests.
But this is really the poignant journey of a soul, not a mea culpa
about sex, with chapters on his hardscrabble boyhood and fascinating,
and sometimes sobering, insights into the life of a bishop and the
tensions between the American Catholic Church and the Vatican. At
points the narrative has more than enough detail on the life of a
globe-trotting abbot. But overall this is an invaluable historical
record and a moving personal confession."