Thursday, April 20, 2006

O'Malleyization Continues in Boston...

...and better late than never.

See what a red hat can do?

The archdiocese of Boston released its long-awaited financial disclosure statement yesterday, with Cardinal Sean O'Malley announcing that its "programs and ministries are at risk" and that the Boston church is currently $46 million in the red.

"The revenue numbers reflect the painful experience of our recent past, the anger over the sexual abuse crisis and the closing of parishes,'' he said in a letter to the region's Catholics. "These numbers are one response of a wounded community, an expression of deep hurt and a measure of our need to remain focused on the long process of healing that lies ahead."....

The reports are fairly grim in tone. "The central administration of the archdiocese is not sustainable in its current form,'' says one document. "While we do have liquidity, we have little left to sell, and we are faced with substantial obligations. In spite of reductions in force of 19 percent since the beginning of the abuse crisis, our central administration, in an effort to maintain services at pre-crisis levels, has operated with deficits in each year.''

Behind the scenes, the new cardinal has previously used the term "financial free-fall" to describe the "dire" state of the archdiocese.

As you can see, however, his own penchant for austerity continues unabated.

Reuters/Jessica Rinaldi