Spotlight: Clergy sex abuse crisis

Investigative reports from the Globe exposing the sex abuse scandal that continues to rock the Catholic Church today.

Jan. 6, 2002 | Part 1 of 2

Church allowed abuse by priest for years

Former priest John J. Geoghan leaving his family home in Scituate in November.

Jim Davis / Globe Staff

Why did it take a succession of three cardinals and many bishops 34 years to place children out of John J. Geoghan’s reach?

Jan. 7, 2002 | Part 2 of 2

//'s%20%20Church.jpg Geoghan preferred preying on poorer children

Psychiatric documents offer added insights into the Rev. John J. Geoghan’s troubled mind and the motivations behind his aberrant actions.

Cardinal Bernard Law says he “cannot estimate” how many priests have molested children.

Jan. 31, 2002

Scores of priests involved in sex abuse cases

Under an extraordinary cloak of secrecy, the Archdiocese of Boston in the last 10 years has quietly settled child molestation claims against at least 70 priests.

Feb. 24, 2002

// Church cloaked in culture of silence

Catholic priests were committing crimes so unspeakable that the Archdiocese of Boston went to extraordinary - and expensive - lengths to cover up the scandal.

Thomas V. Daily is a former aide to Cardinal Law.

March 14, 2002

Ex-Mass. bishop accused of ignoring abuse in NYC

The Most Rev. Thomas V. Daily is accused of brushing aside sexual abuse allegations.

Attorney General Thomas Reilly at a news conference March 1. From left are District Attorneys Daniel Conley, Kevin Burke, Timothy Cruz, William Keating, and Martha Coakley, and Geline Williams, head of the Mass. District Attorneys Association

May 12, 2002

Scandal erodes traditional deference to church

Prosecutors, judges, and politicians who once looked the other way when it came to the church’s dirty laundry are now holding church leaders to a higher standard.

Aug. 20, 2002

// Ariz. abuse case names bishop, 2 priests

Documents show that the three had sex during the late 1970s and early 1980s with a Tucson teenager who was later given a chancery job to ensure his silence.

Cardinal Bernard F. Law has to approve any bankruptcy legal steps by the archdiocese.

Dec. 1, 2002

Archdiocese weighs bankruptcy filing

The Archdiocese of Boston prepared to take the extraordinary step of filing for bankruptcy, as hopes faded for a settlement with alleged victims of clergy sexual abuse.

From left, Phil de Albuquerque of Speak Truth to Power; Rodney Ford, father of an alleged abuse victim; and David Clohessy of Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests. The group addressed the media yesterday in Boston during the release of documents at a Boston law firm.

Wendy Maeda/Globe Staff

Dec. 4, 2002

More clergy abuse, secrecy cases

The Archdiocese of Boston for years dealt in secret with allegations against rogue priests, church records show.

Pope John Paul II and Cardinal Bernard F. Law in a private audience at the Vatican. The pope made no public comment.


Dec. 14, 2002

A church seeks healing

Pope John Paul II accepted the resignation of longtime Roman Catholic archbishop Cardinal Bernard F. Law.

//[1].jpg Key reports from Globe’s Spotlight team on clergy sex abuse

The Boston Globe’s 2001-2002 investigation into sexual abuses by clergy in the Catholic Church resulted in more than 600 stories.

Inside 'Spotlight'

// The movie and the investigations

A look at The Boston Globe’s Spotlight team, its award-winning investigative coverage, and the movie based on its reporting on sexual abuse in the Catholic Church.

More Spotlight reports and Globe investigations


The Boston Globe’s Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church in 2002 has spawned the movie “Spotlight.” Go inside previous reports from the Globe’s Spotlight team.