Church leaders support 'redeemed' priest; others want him out Comments on Stories, posted by Gina Channell-Allen, president of the Pleasanton Weekly, on Nov 15, 2007 at 2:37 pm Gina Channell-Allen is a member (registered user) of PleasantonWeekly.com
Church leaders are speaking out in support of a newly-designated parish leader for the Catholic Community of Pleasanton after members of a nationally-affiliated group protested his appointment because of an arrest for indecent exposure eight years ago.
Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, November 15, 2007, 12:39 PM
Posted by Chris, a member of the Amador Valley High School community, on Nov 15, 2007 at 5:35 pm
The "divide" in the parish is not strong as Ms. Aimar states. The past offense was also not "erased" as she states, but rather the charges settled out on the agreement of counciling. Nothing was hidden. The information on these charges has been available on the net for several years if anyone was concerned enough to Google him.
Posted by Stacey, a resident of the Amberwood/Wood Meadows neighborhood, on Nov 15, 2007 at 9:22 pm Stacey is a member (registered user) of PleasantonWeekly.com
This is a position of trust. That trust is already broken. It doesn't matter now whether or not Fr Greene gets confirmed to replace Fr Dan or if people like Theresa Aimar decide to leave the Church over this. The trust is broken.
Posted by Chris, a member of the Amador Valley High School community, on Nov 15, 2007 at 10:12 pm Chris is a member (registered user) of PleasantonWeekly.com
The "trust is broken" with you Stacey. I am a church parishoner who doesn't feel that same break of trust with Fr. Greene. I have every confidence that he can lead the church if people provide him with the same respect he earned in his prior five years with us after this event happened. It would be a challenge to find anyone who came to know him during that time that would relate anything other than a positive experience.
Posted by Stacey, a resident of the Amberwood/Wood Meadows neighborhood, on Nov 15, 2007 at 11:15 pm Stacey is a member (registered user) of PleasantonWeekly.com
Unfortunately I'm not the only one with whom this trust is broken. Go take a look at comments from other writers. And I'm not talking about no longer having confidence in Fr Greene as a leader or not having positive experiences with him. For me that isn't the issue and I wrote as such that it doesn't matter if he is replaces Fr Dan or not. He can certainly still be a great leader. The issue is that now this information is very public and widespread and it creates a break in any trust one might have. And we don't leave our children with people we don't trust.
Posted by dan mcnevin, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 16, 2007 at 9:00 am dan mcnevin is a member (registered user) of PleasantonWeekly.com
this reminds of another oakland priest, james clark, who in 1963 was arrested and convicted of having sex with a 19 year old man. The bishop then knew of the arrest. Clark was given probabation and the bishop assigned him, while still on probation, to a church in Fremont. There is no record that the bishop told the parish of Clark's arrest. In the recent mega settlement of $56 million paid by Oakland Diocese, at least three victims were alterboys who were abused by Clark when they were 8-12 years old. If parents had known of Clark's past, would they have left their kids alone with him? Why take a chance with Greene? (Comment deemed inappropriate by Pleasanton Weekly Online staff) I'm as troubled by the Bishop's lack of candor. Why not give the parishoners the information in advance, and let them decide? (I guess they are deciding now, and it looks like the faith community at St. Augustince is getting smaller by the day).
Posted by Marcia Kernan, a resident of another community, on Nov 16, 2007 at 1:50 pm
Let he who is free of sin cast the first stone.
Fr. Greene has now become the victim of imagination. Do any of you really know what happened? Armchair purists can be and usually are the problem; not an alleged action. For a crime to be recognized, a charge must be brought forth in the courts. Let's hope the purists of Pleasanton will never fall victim to imaginations...or maybe they should, for educational purposes.
Now, true Christians, love all sinners, hate their sins. Fr. Greene is no more guilty of sin than any of us and he has expotentially excerised true leadership with compassion that any of us should envy.
Posted by Marie, a resident of the Castlewood neighborhood, on Nov 16, 2007 at 2:06 pm
Marcia, I have to ask if you are part of this church? I know that they say that he has not done this again but maybe it is just he has not been caught yet? If he is placed in Pleasanton it will show all Catholics again that we are not valued. We have been lied to over and over again for years about all this abuse. For once why does the Catholic church not stand up and be honest!
Posted by Ann Garske, a resident of the Highland Oaks neighborhood, on Nov 16, 2007 at 2:24 pm
When Fr. Dan asked his parishners to write him what qualities we wanted in a Pastor, I don't believe anyone asked for a priest with a prior history of sexual deviation and arrest, thus the big heartbreaking shock . We assumed as anyone would in hiring a teacher, police, etc. the choice would have been a person of unblemished character (not perfect and without sin) but a person whom we could respect and be proud in our church and community. Surely there must be a priest with similar good ministry qualifications as Fr. Greene but with a history of morality that can be emulated by our young and old......or is there? You betrayed us, Fr. Dan.
Posted by Betrayed Catholic, a resident of the Golden Eagle neighborhood, on Nov 16, 2007 at 3:46 pm
Marcia let me ask you this - what do you think was going through his imagination when he was caught in a public park bathroom?
I don't care what this man did, how he did it, and if he does it again. What I do care about is all of these conflicted Catholics in the community who will turn their head and keep going to this church. In my book you are all as guilty as he is if you continue to support the Father Dan's decision to keep him.
Posted by Dave, a resident of the Canyon Meadows neighborhood, on Nov 16, 2007 at 4:27 pm
The conjecture displayed here is amazing. Why do many of you want to spin this to more than what happend. The word abuse is used here. No abuse was involved with this case. The comment was also posed "maybe it is just he has not been caught yet". We are going to incriminate someone just based on the possibility they might do something else?
Posted by Mary, a member of the Walnut Grove Elementary School community, on Nov 16, 2007 at 4:50 pm
I think the greatest compromise is if the members of the parish vote on this issue. I also think the parish should have a town hall discussion on this very issue. We are divided and my worst fear is that this will cause tension amoungst each other. We should have a say. This is our Church, our community, and our children that are stake here.
Posted by josie, a resident of the Happy Valley neighborhood, on Nov 16, 2007 at 4:58 pm
It's very true that there was no "abuse" that happened in this particular instance. I agree.
However, the comments that he was only caught this once and/or may do it again, unfortunately, are backed up by statistics. Ask any psychologist or therapist (my husband is one) and they will tell you that 1) when/if you are caught, 99% of the time it isn't the first time you have been involved in a behaviour (when you got your last speeding ticket was it the only time you ever sped???) and 2) you don't just go away for 6-8 weeks and come back "cured"...never to act out again. (Did you ever speed again?) We're not talking rocket science here,,,it's basic human nature.
I know first hand of Fr. Padraig's wonderful work in his prior ministry here, but do I agree that we need to have a person of "unblemished character", as mentioned above. In both New Testament letters that Paul wrote, one to Timothy and one to Titus, he says that the "overseer/elder" must be "above reproach...self-controlled...respectable." I don't think we can use those adjectives in this case.
I am an active member of the parish, and while i have no intention of giving up my precious Catholic faith nor my God over one man, I will certainly be cautious in my roles there.
Posted by Paul, a member of CCOP, a resident of Dublin, on Nov 16, 2007 at 6:21 pm
I do not think any one here is trying to spin this incident. This event has been documented and I was told that there is a police record of this event.
I have a strong feeling about this because I know a very good friend of mine who has been abused by one of the priests in a boarding school and I know what he is going through even today (he is in his 40s now). Please do not underestimate the after effect of child abuses. I am NOT saying that Fr Paradaig has abused a child.
I have been very active in this parish for the past seven years, even since I have moved to this side of the bay. Now, after knowing that the Pastor and the Parish Council, who have been entrusted with the job of finding the next Pastor has betrayed us, at least in my opinion, by not bringing this incident forward to the community, before recommending Fr Paradaig's name to the Diocese. I do not feel comfortable to going to this church if this church does not even respect the parishioners' opinions and I will re-evaluate my affiliation with this parish. My respect to Fr. Paradaig will not be the same as before. He may have redeemed himself to be a good person now. If that is the case, I do not have a problem in him being an Associate Pastor. But I do have a problem in him becoming the Pastor. It would be better, if he withdraws his name so that this community can be together again. I am sure that there are numerous families that feel the same way as I feel. I would ask everyone to express their opinion so that the Pastor, the Parish Council and the Bishop listen to those opinions.
Posted by unclehomerr.., a resident of the Downtown neighborhood, on Nov 16, 2007 at 8:04 pm
.. I don't want my president having sex in the oval office or my spiritual leader doing (whatever) in a park restroom. In this era of charges reduced in the 'interest of justice' or reduced in return for a guilty plea to a lesser charge, we don't know (and perhaps will never know) what really happened. The fact that there was a cop in the neighborhood suggests that this was a regular location for ??? This priest ought to go to Boston U and teach.. and the bishop ought to send us someone who can bring this parish together.. not divide us... Lord hear our prayer.
Posted by Grandma Showley, a member of the Amador Valley High School community, on Nov 16, 2007 at 10:20 pm
Catholic leaders should be accountable and respectful of their local cities. Law breakers should serve their punishments. Exorsisms, worshiping idols and icons, and placing deviates with the congregation may be the wishes of a few leaders, but they should respect and abide by the standards of the neighborhoods. I saw Cardinal Mahoney on C-Span last month, say that he had no intention of obeying any US immigration laws. Whether Pope, Cardinal, or church janitor they are expected to abide by all our government laws pertaining to sexual deviants or illegal immigrants. Maybe our government should reconsider the church's tax exempt status, if the church doesn't respect laws of our government.
Posted by Henry, a member of CCOP, a resident of the Ruby Hill neighborhood, on Nov 16, 2007 at 10:39 pm
If the Fr. Dan and the Diocese of Oakland do not reconsider their decision to appoint Fr.Padraig as the next Pastor, then the parishioners should reconsider writing checks to the church. I am sure that they will listen at that time.
Posted by Kathy Fontaine, a resident of the Stoneridge neighborhood, on Nov 16, 2007 at 11:40 pm
I was a member of the parish for ten years. I remember Fr. Padraig's term in the community quite well. Fr. Padraig was always quite charming and charasmatic in public and from the pulpit. I enjoyed his homilies very much. He seemed to be quite popular. However, to my surprise, my experience with him in a personal pastoral role was quite different. I found him to be inappropriately self-righteous, arrogant, dogmatic outside his realm of expertise, and, ultimately, verbally abusive. I also found him to be disrespectful of the pastor in an understated, yet still inappropriate way. There was no call for the behavior I experienced -- on more than one occasion -- and it certainly was not appropriate behavior for any member of the community, pastoral minister, and especially not a priest. Now, that this recent information has become available, I can only wonder whether there is a deeper disconnect between Father Padraig's persona, and his true self. Was he working on his "issues" when he was working in the parish at that time? Is he still working on those issues? How deep goes his redemption? Is he truly ready for this leadership role which requires real integrity? Let us act with compassion and understanding -- yes. However, do we not also have a responsibility to protect, as best we can, those who have blind faith and trust in our church leadership? Shouldn't we not act with compassion and understanding on their behalf, as well? Holy Spirit, please guide us.
Posted by Anne, a resident of the Civic Square neighborhood, on Nov 17, 2007 at 1:54 am
Father Dan has worked very hard for over twenty years to mold CCOP into a loving, generous, unified community, and succeeded in a remarkable manner. Now, unfortunately, because information was witheld when it should have been made public, all those years of work have been diminished in one fell swoop. It is very embarrasing to be a member of CCOP right now, you scarcely want to go out in public and talk to people.
Posted by Georgia, a resident of the Downtown neighborhood, on Nov 17, 2007 at 1:58 am
I work in a hospital situation. There are certain rules of conduct that are particular to this job that must be kept. One of these is patient confidentiality. I might do something as innocent as mentioning a patients name and condition in a public elevator and lose my job. I also hold a national and state liscensure. If I commit a felony, I automatically lose that license, and would be unable to work in my field, no matter how sorry I was or how much I repented. Every field of employment has expectations and standards of behavior, and the church certainly should be one of them. I do not want a priest over me who does not meet those expectations.
Posted by Member of CCOP, a resident of the Heritage Valley neighborhood, on Nov 17, 2007 at 7:44 am
Again I ask.....what does P. Greene (will not address him as Fr.) need a condo in Emeryville for? With all of this kind of scandal that really scares me. P. Greene needs to step down so that we can heal from this. Fr. Dan is showing the stress from this scandal and it is not fair that his last months be overshadowed by this mess! P. Greene would be better off practicing his ministries as a lay person and not behind the collar of a catholic priest. We don't need any more disgrace or hurt.
Posted by Supportive Member of CCOP, a resident of the Val Vista neighborhood, on Nov 17, 2007 at 8:12 am
First of all, Father Greene owning real estate is not something that should be an issue and is ridiculous to even discuss. He did not take a vow of poverty and unless he took a vow of stupidity he should invest in real estate for his own secure retirement. Maybe you don't realize that the salary and retirement benefits for our ordained are dismal. There are many parishes in the U.S. that have their priests live outside of the church property and actually purchase their house for them. God forbid he actually spent his own money and didn't use the church funds! I also wish that people might have more than a 5th grade expectation of the ordained and realize that they are human and struggle with the same issues that everyone of us does. Disclosure? Hmm...I don't know that I've reviewed the personal history, counseling sessions, and county property records for my doctor, dentist, lawyer, or accountant...all positions of trust. Let's just say, I am in charge of my own spirituality and my entire church community along with the priests help me grow in my faith. Period. If you are looking at a priest to be Jesus here on earth perhaps you should take advantage of the many fine Adult Education opportunities offered through the church and the diocese so you can further your education.
Posted by member, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 17, 2007 at 8:13 am
The church should be a place where everyone should feel safe. Given the Catholic Churches recent past with their clergy and the denial that followed. Our community will always look at Mr.Greene and wonder...
Ask yourself, would you feel comfortable leaving your children in his presents? Knowing what you know......
Posted by Supportive Member of CCOP, a resident of the Val Vista neighborhood, on Nov 17, 2007 at 8:27 am
I would have no problem leaving my child with Father Greene, absolutely none. I'm just wondering though, when is your child at church unsupervised? Does that happen often? Where is the parental supervision? Is this even a valid fear? I am so surprised by the members of this community who are supposedly so well educated and yet so ignorant. Making connections between what he did and child abuse is just negligent. I sympathize with the people who have been abused, this is just not one of those issues. Father Greene baptized my child, and I am looking forward to him being a part of her life for a very long time.
Posted by Reflect, a resident of the Apperson Ridge neighborhood, on Nov 17, 2007 at 8:40 am
For everyone who is feeling so self righteous:
Please take a minute to reflect and be thankful that your life, your parenthood, your spousehood, your personhood are not under galling public scruitiny. Are we delighted to learn this about Fr. Greene? No. Is it the end of civilization as we know it? No. If you can truly examine every aspect of your past and say that it is without stain, without embarrassing (even mortifying) moments, then God bless you. However, if you - like most of us - have some episode you would rather forget, maybe you should get off your high horse and say a prayer that you are never held accountable for every single thing you have ever done.
Posted by Frank, a member of the Walnut Grove Elementary School community, on Nov 17, 2007 at 9:45 am
If this man can not show good judgment on where he conducts his personal business how can he show good judgment running our community. He has already proven he cant make good decisions. I do not want him running my church. And for the church to continue to support this man shows how truly lost and messed up they are.
Posted by G S Again, a member of the Amador Valley High School community, on Nov 17, 2007 at 10:42 am
Sat. 17th go to CoCoTimes.com (Valley Times) type title " Cardinal to lead U.S. Bishops " Protesters disapprove of choice, saying HE was LAX in SEX ABUSE SCANDAL. They 'elect' from their own. Maybe the pickings for promotions are getting thin. It appears, these guys of the street need to be replaced with some personally ethical, common sense leaders with character and moral values to guide the young men who are being raised by the church in today's world. In these cases, it seems youth values of today are superior to those being taught by their elected church elders. Could politics be at play? ...at the expense of the youth. Maybe the congregations should do the electing (hiring).
Posted by Theo, a member of CCOP, a resident of another community, on Nov 17, 2007 at 11:23 am
Supportive Member of CCOP,
You only can sympathize for the victims of the abuses. But you have not experienced it. What we are trying to do here is to NOT to take chances. Parents, please stand up for your children, your family, yourself and the community and speak up and let the diocese and the current Pastor know that we do not want Padraig as our Pastor. This issue has brought a lot of shame on the community as a whole and the leaders of this parish do not seem to get it.
Posted by Shelia, a member of the Walnut Grove Elementary School community, on Nov 17, 2007 at 12:42 pm
It's very sad that this one person is creating such a divide amoungst us. Regardless of the act he committed, he does not deserve to become a leader. Yes, we all are not perfect. We have our flaws. We can forgive. The emails and comments above and on other sites are evident that many of us are disappointed and upset. If Father Greene does truely become Pastor, it will cause this tension to worsten and there will be even a greater divide amoungst us. And to think many of us gave money to help construct the new John Paul Center....A great place for kids huh?
Posted by Joey Piscitelli, a resident of another community, on Nov 17, 2007 at 12:50 pm
Joey Piscitelli here from SNAP.
To the parent who said they are willing to leave their child alone with Greene: What if your willingness to use your child as a human guinea pig backfires? (Comment deemed inappropriate by Pleasanton Weekly Online staff. For Mr. Piscitelli's comments, call him at the number he provides.) Joey Piscitelli 925-262-3699
Posted by Mary, a member of the Walnut Grove Elementary School community, on Nov 17, 2007 at 1:30 pm
For those of you are telling us to leave and find another religion because we are not supporting Father Greene....I say no way! I didn't commit a lued act. How dare you turn this on us? We are just stating facts. If you are too blind to see it, then you leave and take all of your shady people with you! We don't need this at our Church! Open your eyes and get real people!
Posted by Maria, a resident of the Amador Estates neighborhood, on Nov 17, 2007 at 6:40 pm
There are many educated people who chose not to engage in your blogging. The divide is not as great as some make it out to be. There are multiple statements from Cholo, Joe, Stacey, etc. You are the vocal minority. I know many who stand behind Father Padraig for all the good he has done. CCOP will recover and be stronger for it.
Posted by Reggie, a CCOP member, a resident of San Ramon, on Nov 17, 2007 at 6:55 pm
Many people who are not willing to reconsider their decision to support Fr.Padraig are someway associated with the church as committee members and employees and those are the ones who are defending Fr.Padraig here.
Maria, you wait and see how big the dissent is going to be in the next few weeks. Slowly more and more parishioners will come out and express their opinions against this appointment once they learn more and more about it and take time to think about this. Also, please do google on this issue and you will come up with a list of numerous forums on this topic.
Also, all those who are posting their views here are only expressing their opinions to have a leader in whom everyone can trust and respect.
Posted by Wow that was accurate, a resident of the Civic Square neighborhood, on Nov 17, 2007 at 7:07 pm
I have seen the police report. It's as graphic as he says it is. Nothing he said is over the top. It's that BAD. It's all in there. The reporter needs to just get it out their and stop the confusion. GET HIM OUT OF OFFICE!
Posted by concerned ccop member, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 17, 2007 at 7:55 pm
It is tragic that we have an issue like this dividing our parish. If the people that are set on defending this priest would take the time to examine the facts of this case and stop thinking with their hearts and start thinking with their minds they would see that this is not the man that should be leading this religious congregation. While it is true that he has the capacity to do wonderful things and has a sparkling personality, there is a very dark side to his persona that should scare you to death. Especially in light of this new info on what is in the police report!!! Mr. Greene needs to step aside and let this community heal.
Posted by Mary Anne, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 17, 2007 at 8:07 pm
Why doesn't the transition council of the parish post the news about the last meeting? Apparrantly the topic of discussion is that they were concerned that Fr. Greene purchased a condominium in Emeryville (Comment partially removed by Pleasanton Weekly Online staff) I don't get it. We are supposed to go with the teachings of the Catholic Church and the Pope, or we are supposed to go with the teachings and lifestyle of Danielson and Greene?
Posted by ccop member, a resident of the Heritage Valley neighborhood, on Nov 17, 2007 at 8:21 pm
I hope that the supportive member of ccop from Val Vista has read Mary Ann's comment. I stated my concern about his condo in Emeryville earlier this morning but I got slapped on the hand by doing so saying that I didn't have much more than a 5th grade education. My concerns are justified!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you Mary Ann. I wish that Joey P. would check into this matter for us!
Posted by PToWN94566, a member of the Walnut Grove Elementary School community, on Nov 17, 2007 at 11:46 pm
I just have a question- Why is it ok to forgive a priest who has done something like this but if a teacher, doctor, dentist, psychologist etc got caught in the act, would more than likely loose his/her job? And the community would shun who did it.
And my question is setting aside all religious beliefs. I used to go to St. Augustines, but discontinued because of personal values/beliefs (I do respect everyone's opinions though). (Comment partially removed by Pleasanton Weekly Online staff)
Posted by Anne, a resident of the Civic Square neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 3:03 am
Dear CCOP members, please consider this aspect. One of the problems our teens have had in the past at high school is that there are several protestant churches who don't consider Catholics "Christians", and are trying to "convert" them. Knowing how "in your face" teens can be, imagine how they are using this to embarass our churches teens. I can just hear the jibes and teasing now. Do we really want to put our young people through this?
Posted by Jeb Bing, editor of the Pleasanton Weekly, on Nov 18, 2007 at 4:28 am Jeb Bing is a member (registered user) of PleasantonWeekly.com
(Note: Posts are being edited by the Pleasanton Weekly Online staff to remove innuendos, hearsay or specific accusatory information unsupported by facts. Police reports or other official statements regarding this issue will be reported in our ongoing news stories on the Rev. Padraig Greene and the Catholic Community of Pleasanton, but not by postings on our Town Square Forum where we cannot be certain of the source.)
Posted by ccop member, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 12:29 pm
It is no rumor that he owns a condo in Emeryville...that is a fact. Go ahead and check the records! The police report is also a fact. Go ahead and also check those records! Forgiveness is a grace and we should all practice it but it does not mean that we should ignore the facts that have been given to us for a reason. Let's move on and work on getting a new replacement for Fr. Dan.
Posted by Parishoner, a member of the Pleasanton Middle School community, on Nov 18, 2007 at 1:27 pm
People in the parish do have a say in all this. Vote with your feet, or vote with your wallet. If you believe that Greene's appointment is wrong, move over to another nearby parish until the matter is settled, or stay and don't put your money in the collection basket. If the stream of funding is significantly impacted, the Bishop will have to address the problem. In the meantime, here's a wonderful charity of the Pope's that would welcome your donations. You can even direct your donations to the embattled Christians in Iraq:
Catholic Near East Welfare Association, a papal agency for humanitarian and pastoral support serving the churches and peoples of the Middle East, northeast Africa, India and Eastern Europe:
Posted by Joey Piscitelli, a resident of another community, on Nov 18, 2007 at 1:29 pm
NO MORE SECRETS
The Bishop of Oakland has a "No More Secrets" policy that has been campaigned for several years by Fr. Danielson and Bishop Vigneron.
Has anybody realized that the "No more secrets" policy was established because the Catholic Church was supposedly willing to inform all parishioners about the Clergy in their community, and specifically the histories of the Clergy?
Since the Diocese had not informed the entire community of Fr. Greenes arrest record, SNAP informed the community, which should have been the obligaton of the No More Secrets commission.
What you are experiencing here on this forum, and in other areas of public interest and debate, is the result of what happens when people are informed of the record of a Clergy leader in their parish and community. The truth needed to be told.
SNAP was carrying out the intention of "No More Secrets" by doing exactly that; informing a community of a "secret", that obviously
affects thousands of people.
SNAPs intention is to protect children from ANY potential threat, whether or not it's controversial, or it was a "secret".
Posted by troubled, a resident of the Pleasanton Heights neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 2:40 pm
In the grand scheme of things, indescent exposure would have been one issue...but lewd activities where an undercover officer was involved, is another. How are we to know that this was an isolated event? What are we to think that Fr. Padriag knows of this location where people frequent for these types of activities?
Movies stars and politicians are constantly under the microscope since they are considered role models. Physicians and lawyers operate under explicit rules of ethics and can loose their licenses for comitting crimes. Even baseball players are at risk with their involvement in steroids - and then lieing about it. I can forive Fr. Pariag for what he did, but I cannot accept him as our Pastor for his actions display serious flaws in judgment.
Posted by PAUSE, please!, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 3:06 pm
Can everyone PLEASE take a deep breath? This is not a war, although it feels like several want to start one. It is totally unfair to draw new or different conclusions or what ifs based on a police report of 8+ years ago? A lot of what is being stated is just mean spirited. Stay with the facts.
Do you remember growing up and your parents saying if you did A it would lead to B? But, we know, doing A doesn't always lead to B. While the past is there from an incident of 8+ yrs ago, and now obviously haunting a man who has given 30+ years to various communities, some seem intent to strip him of all dignity and read more into the story than exists.
What about taking time to pause and relfect and pray? Being so angry that facts are misconstrued or exaggerated reduces your credibility. There is a path to healthy and healing discussion that can happen if everyone pauses and takes a deep breath. Anger and accusations to discredit the totality of this man is not necessary. I believe the leadership will listen to your concerns. Keeping an angry tone will not solve this or heal this community. If you step back for a moment and just paused on your OWN life story...you know you are NOT the sum of one of your mistakes, or even two or three mistakes. We all know of things we regret doing.
Agree that there is support for him (he has done a lot of wonderful,life giving work-here and elsewhere -before and since this incident) and yes, you have valid concern, so express it plainly and calmly, but please, do not crucify him with inuendos and supposed outcomes which cannot be verified or proven.
And take the supposed condo discussion off your list. Doesn't matter whether true or not. This is America. Real Estate in CA is a good investment many people make. This is where your comments become just plain mean spirited with inuendos and your efforts lose credibility. Stay with the facts and remain calm and people will listen. Otherwise, you appear to be just wanting to tear this man down without regard. No one deserves that. NO ONE!
Posted by Ruth, a resident of the California Somerset neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 3:30 pm
I respectfully disagree. I have been very impressed with the intelligent, well-thought-out and thought-provoking comments presented here. How do you know that we haven't taken time to reflect and pray? As a member of this church, I have prayed all week!! The facts presented here have not at all been misconstrued or exaggerated; I have seen very few comments that that I thought was mean-spirited or gave false innuendo, and I much appreciate the Weekly for taking off the ones that ARE inappropriate. Eight years or eighty years doesn't change the facts....they are still awful. To allow this type of person to lead a religious institution is wrong and we should speak out and let that be known.
Posted by troubled, a resident of the Pleasanton Heights neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 4:02 pm
I think it is a discredit to deny what is already fact and documented in police reports. If the police report was made available to parishoners, this might alleviated the inconsistencies in news reports and even within this blog.
As a member of the church, I have prayed for a smooth transition, a promising new beginning, and exit for Fr. Dan. It is a huge disapointment to know that there were members of the church that have known about this incident without informing the parishoners. As a community, I would have hoped for a more transparent process.
Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore, on Nov 18, 2007 at 4:24 pm
It’s my impression that all posters have made important contributions to the discussion. The tone of the posts has already changed since the flyers were initially distributed.
Feeling and expressing anger is a healthy. Sometimes people hurt when the truth is presented. As long as anger is not the only emotion one can access and express, you are on the right track. After all, it takes time to digest painful information. Trust that the parish will find a balance. I believe that that will only happen with soul searching, honest discussion and a willingness to take an unpopular stance. It may even get more uncomfortable than it is now, but from what I understand of the posts, there are not many pushovers in the parish and most if not all are sincere and willing to persevere.
As a member of SNAP, I strongly believe that you deserve to be told the truth about the entire incident involving Fr. Greene. I suggest that you challenge authority and ask all the questions that you need to ask until you are satisfied. It is critical to ask questions when such an important matter is on the table. Do not shy away or mistrust yourself. Your self will not betray you.
I wish you well in this important life struggle. I forgive Fr. Greene. I strongly believe that he deserves respect and that there are quite possibly other qualified candidates for the position of Pastor.
Posted by troubled, a resident of the Pleasanton Heights neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 4:36 pm
Cholo and Joey:
I think at this point SNAP should back out of the conversation and allow for the church community to come to their own conclusions. SNAP has NOT done the best job at providing unbiased and accurate information. While I can understand your concerns, the execution was not done with the utmost accuracy. If your members cannot deliver a consistent and accurate message it also discredits your allegations and leads to the only conclusion of sensationalism.
Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore, on Nov 18, 2007 at 5:20 pm
Hi troubled, give Joey a call. I think that he would appreciate hearing from you. What do you mean by a town hall meeting? Is it open to observers? Press? Where? Time? In a neutral setting, like away from the church? Not clear what you want? Cameras allowed?
Posted by troubled, a resident of the Pleasanton Heights neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 5:27 pm
Cholo and Joey,
at this point I think that this is an internal church matter and thus should be limited to parishoners. As in other times of distress, SNAP should respect our time and allow us the space to make these decisions amongst ourselves. If there were a church town hall meeting I would not post it on this blog.
Posted by PAUSE, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 6:37 pm
My entire intent was just to say- PAUSE. And then with further reflection move forward with a healthy, calm discussion of the facts and where to go from here.
Nothing will be gained by taking him into the town square and casting stones or tattering him. Yes, it might make some feel better but will not make us as human beings, who desire to strive towards understanding each other, feel better. Anger sows more anger. Understanding sows more understanding. Everyone wants to be understood. I do. You do. Understanding cannot begin until we listen with our heart. A heart full of anger and rage cannot listen. It must pause. It is the reason we often walk away from tense moments in our life and come back later --ready to talk it through. We had to pause, to calm down in order to have a fruitful discussion.
I believe Fr Greene is the last person who will want to divide this community. He has spent an entire adult lifetime in the work of building people and communities up. One error in life, no matter how large it seems to some, does not wipe out 30+ years of sacrifice for others and life changing impact on so many lives here and elsewhere.
I just suggest balance in evaluating this. It is not all one way or another.
St Augustine, the patron saint of this parish, lead a less than stellar life for most of his life, he converted, changed and God worked through him in miraculous ways. His mother, Monica, prayed for many, many years on her knees for his conversion. In fact, many of todays saints had moments of sin or darkness. I might suggest - My life with the Saints by James Martin SJ. A day of darkness can be a conversion experience. God works in miraculous ways.
None of us are perfect. No one. In fact, if anyone out there thinks they are perfect, why not check in with those you live with?
Posted by troubled, a resident of the Pleasanton Heights neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 7:07 pm
in many respects we are having a virtual town hall meeting right now. I would never suggest that we stone Fr. Padraig, nor did I recommend he be involved in this meeting. I think what is important is to address the questions/concerns parishoners have. Leaving them without answers will only create more confusion, doubt, and rumors.
I don't think that anyone is claiming to be perfect. what I am claiming is that there are still questions to be asked. The meer fact that this blog is so popular alludes to the amount of doubt that is circulating within the parish.
I have paused enough to know that there is still so much more to be known before I come to any conclusions.
Posted by Henry, a member of CCOP, a resident of the Ruby Hill neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 7:57 pm
Who are the leaders of the CCOP community? They are not even willing to consider talking to the community. They are only working on hatching plans to overcome this issue at any cost. The police report has to be published everywhere to get the truth out. If it can not be published on the print media, it can be published here in this forum, I suppose.
I also agree that we should not discuss anything related to Fr.Padraig's real estate transactions. It is totally irrelevant.
Ft. Dan announced in the 4 o'clock mass today that he has sent Fr. Padraig away for a week. May be, Fr. Dan is thinking that the issue will go away in a week. All those parishioners who have a strong opinion about this issue, could you please email Fr. Dan and all the parish committee members, expressing your opinions on this issue ASAP?. Please spread the word as soon as possible so that we can find a solution to this issue soon. I agree that we need to insist on having a town hall meeting with the parishioners so that everyone can express their opinions.
Posted by Joey Piscitelli, a resident of another community, on Nov 18, 2007 at 8:21 pm
Dear "troubled ",
This is not an internal matter, and I will not go away. Jesus is not turning me away, and never would.(You should follow his example) You are not in command.
The reason why people are even on this forum is because the truth has surfaced. As I stated before, there should be "No More Secrets", which is the program started by the Bishop himself, unfortunately not followed through by the Diocese in this particular case. People have a right to know if an official has a past that may affect their children, and I will make it my business to inform parents if Clergy have a past that should be revealed.
The fact that you want me to be silent is a red flag in itself. Fr. Greene's past should, and will be an open book, not only for the people of the Catholic community, but also for the entire community of Pleasanton.
Remember, Fr. Greene was arrested at a "public" park, which suggests that all other schools and parks should also be notified.
This also means that the issue is a public issue, and not "an internal issue". That said, I will continue to inform as many parents as possible of the "truth", and as Fr. Danielson himself said, and was quoted in the newspaper, "It's a matter of public record".
Sometimes, when information is revealed in the media, about a person who commits an illegal lewd act in public, a child may come forward and say that he or she witnessed something similar to what the police decoy witnessed in this case. Sometimes a child comes forward and says something worse happened. This has happened in many cases SNAP has revealed a "secret".
You wouldn't want a child to hold something back like that would you? I am sure you would want them to come forward if they are out there, wouldn't you?
Posted by troubled, a resident of the Pleasanton Heights neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 8:45 pm
First...you are not a member of this church and have not been privy to information shared within our community.
Secondly...it appears to me that you can't handle the truth. It is one thing to inform the parishoners of the past happenings with Fr. Padraig, it is another thing to sensationalize them for your own agenda. It appears to me that your past has cluded your own judgement and has resulted in your inability to delivery unbiased information. the inconsistent and conclusory messages from SNAP have compromised the crediblity of the organization.
Lastly, You are correct in saying that I would worry about the company of my children...but I would also worry about leaving my children in the presense of those who have conclusory logic without having the complete set of facts.
Posted by Longtime supportive CCOP member, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 8:52 pm
Forgiveness is a principal tenet of our faith. God knows that we sin. He wants us to live without sins, but understands that is unrealistic. Without forgiveness, a true confession would mean nothing. Without forgiveness there is stalemate.
Fr. Greene has repented; in the eyes of the Lord he has been forgiven.
At today's 9 a.m. Mass, there was resounding applause following Fr. Dan's address to the congregation. Sure, there were some disseneters; a couple of families even left before Fr. Dan began speaking. But the sheer volume of applause and the loving support for Fr. Dan - and by extension, Fr. Greene - was heartwarming. Also, it was touching to see members of the Bereavement group wearing shiny green ribbons as a show of support for Fr. Greene. As Father Dan said, as a whole, we are a mature community.
To those who are not ready to forgive, I pray that, with time, you will be able to specifically name and channel your anger. I hope that whatever anger you hold will, one day, be replaced by grace.
A little exercise for us all: Remember your worst sin.
It's there if you think about it. Did you confess it before a priest? Did you agonize over it and repent wholeheartedly? Did you appologize to anyone involved? If you haven't confessed, you will feel so much better for doing so. And if you did confess it, did you have to do it publicly? Did you have to endure intense scrutiny and hateful feelings from the public, even after God and your peers had forgiven you?
Father Greene is a man. He made a mistake. The charges were cleared. He repented, he was healed. And now he is again in pain.
Again, remember your worst sin.
If you truly regret it and you never received the forgiveness you deserve, how do you handle it?
I am offering loving prayer that our community can, with time, heal. Part of this healing involves forgiveness. It will take us all different amounts of time to process that forgiveness.
Posted by troubled, a resident of the Pleasanton Heights neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 9:05 pm
I am not angry. I am troubled - hence the name.
I want to know the unvarnished facts and I am equally troubled by the incident as the time it has taken to get the facts. We are into this issue for 1 week now and it was earlier today that the police officer's report was posed on this blog (note - you can also see the report on the Contra Costa Time's website). Why so long?
Posted by Pete Z., a resident of the Deer Oaks/Twelve Oaks neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 9:07 pm
Longtime: I was at that same mass and I was completely APPALLED at what happened. Yes, we FORGIVE, but that DOES NOT MEAN that Fr. Padraig is qualified to lead our community!! It IS NOT and NEVER WILL BE about forgiveness. It is about integrity and honesty. I do remember my worst sin and you know what,,,there were CONSEQUENCES attached to that sin. NOT pastoring the largest parish in the diocese is the consequence for his sin. Forgiveness, yes; Senior Pastor, no.
Joey: I agree with Troubled,,,you have got the word out; thank you...now let us deal with it...we feel strongly it is no longer your concern. Pat yourself on the back and leave. And it has nothing to do with Jesus.
St Josephs: Thank you for YOUR information. I assume that means that Fr. Padraig is not a celibate/chaste priest, which would reitreate item #
Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore, on Nov 18, 2007 at 9:33 pm
It seems to me that Pause is trying to normalize Fr. Padraig’s behavior by claiming that nobody is perfect. Keep in mind that healthy adults don’t loiter in park toilets and get arrested for indecent exposure/lewd behavior.
I haven’t read anywhere in this blog that the parish community is trying to set up Fr. Padraig so that they can “cast stones” or harm him with their “anger and rage.” Expressions of anger can be very healthy; anger can help people find location. Pause, what do you suppose the parish needs to understand? It’s clear that Bishop Vigneron stands by his choice of Fr. Padraig. Everybody already understands that the bishop stands by his man! And, there is no reason to believe that the bishop will change his mind.
What does listening with the heart mean? It seems like Pause is trying to lead the parish to feel emotions and not to use their intellect to problem solve. Already, anger is being split off as bad, not desirable; how come Pause is asking you to soft pedal or not feel the anger that some of you righteously feel? Maybe folks need to feel their emotions and decide for themselves what is appropriate for them to feel what they feel as long as they need to feel it. I agree that time is an element that can foster reasonable dialogue. The situation is out of control and that may not be such a bad thing. SNAP is the messenger. Parish members cursing us and threatening us with physical violence is completely inappropriate. What’s up with the threats and dirty name-calling?
Fr. Greene may not have desired this split but it’s a consequence of his behavior. He defied the penal code and he was arrested. All immigrants must live by American laws.
Given the track record of American Bishops, their complicity/deception during this horrific scandal, it’s wise to be cautious when such problems arise in your own parish. Nobody is discounting the 30+ years of service. What I’m hearing is that folks are concerned, and for good reason, that Fr. Greene may not be the best choice at this time or ever to lead any parish. It’s about time that the parish community has some information so that they can discuss what truly concerns them as faithful Catholics.
This is not about a “dark moment”. Lets be clear, Fr. Greene got arrested for violating the California Penal Code. He was arrested for indecent exposure/lewd conduct. To describe what happened as a “dark moment” makes his violation of CA law invisible.
By the way troubled, are you a diocese operative? Just asking.
Posted by Piper, a resident of the Foothill Place neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 9:44 pm
It would also be great if posts from Joey and Cholo were deleted, as they are members of SNAP and are now trying to add fuel to the fire. Just read their posts, it's obvious. We thanked them for their input; now move on to the next situation...i'm sure it will be there soon.
Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore, on Nov 18, 2007 at 10:00 pm
Sorry Bob, but when Fr. Greene violated the Penal Code of CA, and was arrested for indecent exposure/lewd conduct, he renounced his faith. I agree with you that he should "move on". Thanks for the insight!
Posted by Longtime supportive CCOP member, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 10:09 pm
The idea that this is not about forgiveness may be true, for some. And the further idea (paraphrasing Pete Z's all caps statement)that this is more an issue of character than of forgiveness certainly does, in all honesty, give me pause. I am now spending more time thinking about it from that perspective and am still coming to terms with it.
These opposing perspectives are helpful during what is obviously a painful time for all of us. If we keep it mature and offer facts and well-constructed opinions. We are all in this together -- hopefully.
Thanks for the perspective in your recent 2 or 3 posts, Pete Z and Troubled. Without opposing viewpoints no one can have a good foundation for an opinion.
If I had to give a final opinion this second,I would still support Fr.Greene. But after reading and participating in this thread tonight for the first time, there's an awful lot to sleep on tonight.
And for the record, I am not affiliated with church administration or parish council in any way -- if asked I could not name the members of those groups off the top of my head!
Posted by Pet, a resident of the Deer Oaks/Twelve Oaks neighborhood, on Nov 18, 2007 at 10:27 pm
Longtime: Please realize it is NOT about "support". I think the world of Fr. Greene, I support him finding an appropriate place to serve God. I'm so sorry this is his lot in life, but it is self-imposed; a consequence of his actions. I hope and pray that he will find a place to minister. I do not think it should be here in the #1 position in the largest parish in the diocese. Again, it's not about support, forgiveness, mercy, any of those things....those are all a given if you are in Christ. None of those things tho, mean he should be the shepherd.
Posted by dan mcnevin, a resident of the Beratlis Place neighborhood, on Nov 19, 2007 at 10:30 am
There have been comments about Padraig being forgiven and absolved of sin, etc. For some that might be enough. I don't like to repeat myself, but I remind all that Oakland Diocese priest Jim Clark was arrested and convicted in a police sting in the old days. His bishop knew it and apparently forgave him, assigned him to a parish in fremont and he then abused at least three kids. Now technically, the arrest record back then was public knowledge. But what parent knew to do a background check? One excuse often proferred for this back then was that the bishops didn't know any better - they thought therapy would solve the problem.
Forgiveness by itself doesn't always work to stop damaging behavior. One difference here is that the parish has been informed, albeit not by the folks who knew and could have said something - so now the people can work to stop potentially damaging behavior. People can still love and care about Padraig Greene while insisting that his ministry be limited to what is appropriate to the potential risk. It is probably harder for a person to change than it is for an institution to change, so Greene's limitations might be something that works in his favor.
I would hope the outrage of this deception becomes directed less at Fr. Greene and more at the system that chose to keep this secret from its flock. The system might do this again if its not held more accountable.
I have two over arching questions and comments.
1) would people rather not know about this?
2) if this has come out about Fr. Greene, are there other secrets out there in the diocese of this nature?
To the first question, I know I'd want to know. I love making fully informed decisions in all aspects of my life.
To the second, I don't know if there are other secrets, but, by way of provacative example, in the case of Clark, the diocese did not produce a copy of Jim Clark's police report when asked during legal proceedings. It took a private investigator digging through county arrest records to find the report. They were asked for that report in 2004.
In the case of Greene, the report or his history wasn't offered up to you. What is inconsistent to me is the keeping of him in ministry with this reality hanging over his head. The diocese chose not to limit him, just as it chose not to limit Clark. By 2002 (at the latest), they knew what Clark had done. Even if their excuse with regard to Greene was they didn't know better in 1999, by 2002 they were forced to know better. The diocese has treated the two situations in close to the same manner.
Padraig Greene might be entitled to try to keep his secrets, but the Diocese might not be entitled to keep its, since some of those potentially endanger kids if those secrets involve sexual abuse or sexual boundary issues.
Posted by Henry, a member of CCOP, a resident of the Ruby Hill neighborhood, on Nov 19, 2007 at 11:58 am
Dear Longtime Supportive CCOP Member,
All those people who got up and applauded, in my opinion, were in someway coached to do or asked to do. The same thing applies to all the people who were wearing the green ribbons. I saw a few of the church commitee members standing outside the church hatching plans to suppress this issue, I think. Fr. Dan did mention about this and he was very generic and so I was not compelled to leave the church.
Regarding your question of "Greatest Sin" : None of us are qualified to say the actions of others as "Sin". I am not calling Fr. Padraig's actions as "Sin" because I am not worthy of doing so, in the eye of the Lord. But his actions are "condonable, disgraceful, shameful" becuase of the location and the way he did it. That is all we are saying. These actions certainly do not make him qualify him to lead the church. I respect him as a human being but not as a Pastor. Ia m sure, you agree with me that you wouldn't want to tell your kids that your Pastor is a great man and you want your kids to follow his teachings. Please look into the eyes of children and decide whether you want this man to lead this church and teach your kids.
If you talk to any pshychologist, you will come to a conclusion that any person who has committed this kind of act in such a public place, will not be able to control his actions and certainly that was not the first time he has done similar things. Why don't the Parish Committee Members and Diocese and Fr. get this correctly? They are saying that he has redeemed himself and he has been good in the past several years. But can any of them "guarantee" that this will not happen? If anything like this happens, we will not know for many many years because the kids are generally afraid and terrified to bring it to the notice of the parents immediately. It is NOT worth taking chances. This issue has nothing to with "forgiving" but to do with "accountability and taking responsibility" for ones bad choices and actions.
If a teacher or a dentist or any other public official has done this kind of things, you would have worked hard to remove that teacher from the school, thrown the dentist out of business and brought that public office down from his/her position. Don't we have double standards here?
Posted by Monica, a resident of the California Reflections neighborhood, on Nov 19, 2007 at 12:47 pm
Henry, You bring up a good point. Maybe you, Joey and Cholo should begin an investigation into the past of our local leaders. Is it possible that any of them have cheated on their husbands/wives and are not fit to lead our schools/children and community of character? Let's never let this end until we have exposed each and every local officials past. You go boys!
Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore, on Nov 19, 2007 at 1:20 pm
Amen Henry. In a way, there is a sweetness in wearing the green ribbons. First of all they are pretty! Secondly, green suggests new beginnings, new life and may be a symbol of change and your faith. It also reminds me of the rolling green hills of Ireland. As for Bishop Vigneron, he has behaved wrecklessly and it would be wise not to allow him to sneak out the back door. All children have a right to thrive. They have a right to be safe and to feel safe. Vigneron does not have a right to place your children at risk. Smooth talk from the Diocese of Oakland does not cut it. It is like a verbal slight of hand, shifting the focus, hooking your guilt, distorting the teaching of Christ for their own purposes. I would suggest that EVERYBODY wear a green ribbon as a symbol of your faith in Christ. Not as a symbol of support of a mortal man. Christ is Eternal!
Posted by Mary, a member of the Amador Valley High School community, on Nov 19, 2007 at 1:39 pm
Pleasanton Weekly Staff,
Read previously a post about concern of Pleasanton Weekly blog. At the time, thought that blog could be a good thing & was pleased to read a statement from the Pleasanton Weekly that newspaper would step in. I am not a catholic but have to feel for the Church on this issue. In this case, there was an arrest (community is not reacting to rumor). The Church trying to keep secret is a larger concern. Points have become repetitive. Weekly – isn’t time to step in? Points are made. You have let this go to the point that people take shots at each other. You have let this go to the point that I now support previous post about blog hurting community. The issues are out there and a part of public report. Do the job of a newspaper – write about news. Stop trying to create it. It is time to let the Church deal with their issues.
Posted by Theu, a CCOP Member, a resident of another community, on Nov 19, 2007 at 1:47 pm
The Pleasanton Weekly has been very kind enough to create this forum for the parishioners to express their opinions. The church and the committee members have a lot of resources, like Sermons, Church Bulletins, Diocese Newspapers, etc. to publish their biased opinions. So, I personally thank the PW to let the concerned parishioners like me to express their opinions.
Posted by Lillie, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 19, 2007 at 6:21 pm
I was at one of the CCOP masses on Sunday, and can assure you that I was NEITHER coached NOR asked to applaud Fr. Dan's statement, and NO ONE asked me to wear green either, but I did so OF MY OWN VOLITION!
Posted by Longtime CCOP member, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 19, 2007 at 7:26 pm
Hello, again, friends in faith.
Here are a few things I'd like to throw out there:
1. First of all, on the issue of public forum: I hadn't visited these pages much until this latest issue came about. I have to admit that, although I don't necessarily agree with much of what has been said or the way that some writers have chosen to express themselves, I am finding this forum quite cathartic in a way. I, personally, am still torn. Having this valuable forum allows us to examine others' viewpoints and to see various levels of agreement and disagreement.
2. On the issue of the applause and green ribbons: Sorry, Henry; I understand where you're coming from with your hunch, but it was incorrect.(; There was no one before Mass trying to coax others to applaud or wear green ribbons(I was in the vestibule before mass talking with some friends and their kids for a full 20 minutes beforehand). People reacted to Fr. Dan's speech on their own free will.
3. On the issue of the selection committee, the clergy, and the bishop not informing the parish of Father Greene's past, AND on the issue of their choosing someone with an unblemished past to run our parish... Is is possible that there were limited choices for the pastor? I have no idea how many eligible prospective pastors there are out there; wondering if there was a limited pool to draw from...? I know this doesn't excuse any behavior people might feel deceived by. But it might help us understand how the process went.
4. Finally, on the topic of forgiveness: Yes, I do agree with others that the quality of one's character can be separate - mutually exclusive in many cases - from true repentence and forgiveness for wrongdoings. This idea is one of the main reasons that, after much thought, I find myself torn on the issue.
This forum has helped me see things in a light I hadn't discovered until yesterday. While I am not comfortable with many of the hateful comments being thrown about, I am grateful for the participation of what is obviously a well educated, passionate group of residents.
Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore, on Nov 19, 2007 at 7:46 pm
Trouble, what are your thoughts about the police report? Why do you suppose that it's not posted on this blog? Too nasty for innocent minds? You could make 500 copies and distribute them to good residents of Pleasanton. I agree with Joey that it's best to stick around for awhile and not be silenced. Are you still in command?
Monica, thank you for sharing! I'll be away for a few days so Happy Thanksgiving!
Posted by Henry, a member of CCOP, a resident of the Ruby Hill neighborhood, on Nov 19, 2007 at 8:10 pm
I do want to see the Police Report. If it is a public document, we should see it. May be, that will help the community to decide what really had happened on that day and understand the seriousness of the issue we are faced with. There are still doubts in some parishioners minds that SNAP has hyped this issue. Dis we not get the Ken Starr's report published?
Posted by Sarah, a resident of the Birdland neighborhood, on Nov 19, 2007 at 8:41 pm
Some of you people need to open your eyes and for goodness sake see the light! I am deeply disappointed with the Catholic Church and those of you who think it is just fine to have Fr. Greene as our pastor. Why are we even considering this man to be our leader? He has broken our trust once, he was caught indecently in a public place, and now has divided our parish. For those of you who are as shocked as I am, may I restate a suggestion that was stated already. Do not continue to support the Church financially until this issue is resolved. We also need to continue to let Father Dan how we feel and continue to voice our cry for help! I also want to thank the Pleasanton Weekly for giving us an outlet to voice our concerns. You'd think CCOP website would have something like this, but surprise surprise..... They don't.
Posted by Mulling it over, actively, a member of the Foothill High School community, on Nov 19, 2007 at 9:09 pm
I have many of the same thoughts as "Longtime CCOP member". I have always had much respect and affection for Fr. Greene over the years. After moving to the community in 1999, I began attending St. Augustine's, and it wasn't until Fr. Greene arrived that I began feeling a strong re-connection to the Catholic faith and looking forward to attending mass on a semi-regular basis. One child was in Fr. Greene's section of first Eucharist (communion), and it was a very unique, moving ceremony. When we've shown the homily/sermon on video to family members who couldn't be there, they have been moved to tears with the message of family rifts, parental love, healing, and community. I thought at the time and since that Fr. Greene must have passed through his own personal hell to arrive at a place where he was able to bring the gift of compassion and healing to others. I never had need (fortunately) yet to join one of his Grief groups, but always thought that he would be a good choice if the need arose.
When he came back to the parish last year to lead a workshop for parents of teens, I saw many of the parishioners go up to him after the session was over to shake his hand, hug him, and tell him how much his daily presence was missed here in Pleasanton. None of this was coached, none of this was out of false sentiment; the parents recognized his strengths as a counselor and a sympathetic yet knowledgeable ear.
Yet, even after my relating all of this, I do read all of the comments here with an open mind. The two which struck me the most were those of "Longtime CCOP member" and Kathy Fontaine's thoughtful message on the possible disconnect between Fr. Greene's public persona vs. his one-on-one interactions with adults and the perceived disregard for Fr. Dan's authority. I take Kathy's experience seriously, and wonder about this, in light of the police reports.
As I indicated, I am mulling this all over, and while it might not be my decision, I am feeling my way to my own comfort level.
I appreciate all of the comments here, especially those which weren't flippant or hurtful; those which were thoughtful and informative, in good intention, in good faith toward neighbor and fellow person.
Posted by celia, a resident of the Del Prado neighborhood, on Nov 19, 2007 at 11:03 pm
If you are opposed to this decision and if Fr. Padriag isn't removed, the ONLY thing to do is attend mass somewhere else (I'm not agreeing with thos who leave the church. I cannot leave my Catholic faith no matter what any man does to try to mess it up.) and give your money to other charities. And, that should be done as soon as possible so the powers that be get the message
Posted by Joey Piscitelli, a resident of another community, on Nov 19, 2007 at 11:59 pm
For all those concerned, I visited the park/playground where Fr. Greene committed the lewd act. There were children there today. Visit it yourselves. It's at 6900 Broadway in Oakland.
Because the lewd act was committed at a Public park/playground, it is an issue concerning child safety, you will become aware of that when you see the park.
The matter of great concern here is that there is also a school and playground near the St. Augustine Church in Pleasanton.
Since this issue is not only a Catholic Church issue, it is a child safety issue, I am going to print 1500 flyers to be distributed at nearby schools in Pleasanton.
I believe the protection of children should be the number one goal
of concerned parents in the community.
Anyone interested in contacting me may call me at 925-262-3699.
I thank you all for your concern for all the children in Pleasanton, both Catholic, and non-Catholic children. I know that we all place child-safety first and foremost, above all our differences in opinion.
Posted by CCOP Member, a resident of the Heritage Valley neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 4:32 am
What is really scarring me is the support that the people of CCOP are giving to Mr. Greene after all of this has come forward...would you want a teacher with your children or a dr. with you after they were caught doing this? I wouldn't!! I have received so many calls and emails for me to wear a green ribbon next Sunday at St. Augustines where Mr. Greene will be celebrating all of the masses. I cannot believe that this parish would support someone who has abused his position to this degree. Forgive him YES but keep him as pastor NO. This diocese depends on our $$$ and I for one will stop giving my money to the church if Mr. Greene becomes pastor. I am now praying for the CCOP to come to their senses.
Posted by Longtime CCOP member, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 9:22 am
Joey- Suggest you not waste your money on fliers. I recommend you leave this to the faith community to handle. If you do decide to print and distribute 1,500 fliers you will need clearance from the Pleasanton Unified School District AND from personnel on site at EACH individual school prior to passing out any fliers -- even if you do so in public areas like the street. You will not be received well and will be escorted away by the Pleasanton Police. Example: At an elementary school last Thursday, people passing out fliers about a local development issue were asked to leave by the principal. When they didn't, the police arrived.
Thanks for informing us and helping us start this discussion. But please let us handle this in a manner that is appropriate for our community.
Posted by Janette Miller-Lewis, a resident of another community, on Nov 20, 2007 at 9:31 am
As a former, long-time resident of Pleasanton and a Catholic, I read with interest the news of my hometown. While the recent revelations about Fr. Padraig Greene and a situation in his past may have seemed an esoteric, clergy matter, they are, in fact, a community matter with far-reaching ramifications but also of opportunities. Cafeteria Catholicism among anyone is pompous, exclusionary - hypocrisy. Among clergy, it is sickening. This attitude should be a concern for the community as a whole where there are two active and influential Catholic churches. I can understand that Fr. Greene is loved, accepted and supported – all these with good reason. Without question, Fr. Greene has performed to an extraordinary bar his duties and displayed creativity and compassion as a leader. It is an insult though, not only to disenfranchised Catholics – those of divorce who remarry, those who favor artificial means of birth control, marry a non-Catholic and the like but also to non-Catholics in our communities, who fall short of ideals, to lower the bar for some and not for others. The Church is going through a profound purification - at least in the United States. Our nation is going through a purification of sorts where our leaders are held up to strident standards. “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.” I say, “Purification for Everyone!” In light of what Fr. Greene has admittedly done and for him to be “Welcomed as a sinner,” but repenting in such a grand manner is perplexing to those who fall short and are dismissed from the Church. Often after painful self-examination and faith-based counseling, as Fr. Greene has undergone, some Catholics choose to end abusive marital relationships where children and one’s physical safety are compromised but long to have their Church as a refuge in their time of healing. To jump through hoops in order to be part of any church community is also an abusive, lewd act. It seems too often that forgiveness in our world and in churches, as we are now reminded, is conditional - according to who one knows and how the sinner’s value is perceived. Just as Fr. Greene and many, Catholic or not, may if they could, go back and do many things differently or not at all, purification and fresh starts must be available across the board – at least in the sanctity of one’s chosen faith – a safe place, not to be out of reach. The old, divorced woman who attends Mass every Sunday, puts a precious small amount into the basket but won’t go to Communion is just as worthy of new beginnings as high profile clergy. Does this analogy ring any Church bells? I truly wish the community of St. Augustine’s, the Diocese and Pleasanton strength and many blessings during this tough time but perhaps wiping the slate clean for others would speak louder than effusive explanations for Fr. Greene by the powers that be. I was insulted before I laughed at the series of events and explanations by clergy higher-ups. Communities of all types grow stronger where love, tolerance and self-honesty are the impetus for healing, change and yes, miracles – not just for the inner circle but the common folk as well.
Janette Miller-Lewis, long-time Pleasanton resident, active in the St. Augustine's community for many years and now residing in Austin, TX
Posted by G Again, a member of the Amador Valley High School community, on Nov 20, 2007 at 9:48 am
I would not compare an open space petition with a CHILD SAFETY ALERT. This concerns the safety of all children in Pleasanton.
I am really getting disgusted with the Catholic CHURCH arrogantly defying the standards of decency and laws of our land....that includes openly defying immigration laws. The church's hypocrisy in many areas is becoming too much to bare. The arrogance is considering the church above our laws, wihout which we have no civil society.
Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore, on Nov 20, 2007 at 10:22 am
I've printed up 1,000 flyers and I distributed them at BART stations in San Francisco. People were gracious and thanked me.
Nice try longtime. A few dozen volunteers plan to distribute flyers in Walnut Creek, Lafayette, Livermoor, Oakland, Emeryville, Berkeley, Fremont, San Jose, and to all reps in Sacramento. Bloggers in the UK (Ireland) have also been informed. The bishop cannot deny what has happened and there's no way the he can make the police report invisible. The police report is public information and will continue to be made even more public.
longtime, you are not the commander in chief of any community....wake up!
SNAP will not be silenced. It must be eating you up that you cannot control SNAP.
Posted by Longtime CCOP member, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 10:34 am
Don't worry, Cholo. No one wants to control you, although I do find the "commander in chief" comment hilarious in an ironic sort of way!! In fact, I thanked SNAP for helping us start this discussion. My opinions have begun to change since participating in this discussion. It is, therefore, interesting that you chose to direct an angry message toward someone (me) whose opinion you were able to influence. I hope you find some inner peace through this process; that we all do. I'll keep reading this discussion; it's helpful. But I'm signing out as a participant. There, now. You controlled me :) Smiles -
Posted by mkm and a member of CCOP, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 12:14 pm
Joey and Cholo, You need help. Your angers have become a pressure cooker within and outside your body; it is now a cancer or better yet, an AIDS virus that you wish to spread to all those you can.
As a family who has experienced similarily what you have, let us tell you: IT'S OK TO LET GO! GET OVER IT! LIFE CAN AND DOES MOVE ON!
You have overspent your time in Pleasanton; now leave. However, as you spread 'the good news' throughout the Bay Area, remember this: the day will come when you will meet Jesus and I can't help but wonder what He will say to you. (Are your actions what Jesus would do?) It's one thing to bring forth a concern; it's another to badger it to the point of destroying not only a human being, a whole CCOP community, a town, but now the whole Bay Area. How do you two sleep at night?
I certainly hope that the sins you have committed (and, yes, you have or you wouldn't be here on this earth) will never be brought forth to the public for it, too, could lead you to personal destruction.
May you find the peace that will allow you to let go...forever!
Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore, on Nov 20, 2007 at 12:33 pm
Hi OMG, what you and others are missing is Bishop Vigneron. He's the guy with any real power to bring about significant change. It matters not what the parish membership thinks. The Bishop can live with the news about Fr. Greene,so don't think that your thoughts/opinions matter to the Bishop. The bishop can wait this out, he believes that it will pass and come January, Fr. Greene will be Christ's rep. at St. Augustines. Tha's what the parish council and some parish members desire. Also, the more this becomes an internal church matter, you will be told to eat it or find another church. In other words, the parish membership is expendible, what matters most is keeping Fr. Greene as an an active priest in the Roman Catholic Church. As you can see, it appears that he already received his reward for breaking the law. Like they say, no good deed goes unpunished.
Posted by Withheld, a resident of the Stoneridge neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 1:07 pm
My friend is a police officer and tells me Penal Code 647a is the old version of annoy or molest a child (current version Penal Code § 647.6). Penal Code 314.1 indecent exposure and the other, if the person is convicted, are both individually registrable sex offenses under Megan's Law.
Posted by Anne, a resident of the Castlewood neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 1:08 pm
I do not attend the Catholic church anymore I choose to attend another church in town. This is so sad to read all the hateful things that are being said to each other. How do you all think that your parish will be able to recover from this. I would hope that this issue would be resolved soon before the damage is not repairable. I ask that Fr. Dan and Fr Green do something to put an end to all this hate.
The penal code HAS NOT changed that charge DOES NOT include minors. Know your facts. Do not spread vicious, hateful, gossip. It is not a Megan's Law offense no matter how hard you would like to make it one, the Megan's law offenses are part of the penal code, Section 290. Maybe you and your police officer friend should take some administration of justice classes at the community college.
I have no problem with people using this forum as an outlet to express their emotion and opinion on the issue. I do have a problem with lies being spread. Stick to the facts. THERE WERE NO CHILDREN INVOLVED. PERIOD. As for Joey and Cholo, less is more boys. People that actually supported you are now realizing how misinformed and fanatical you are. Thank you for the facts, please don't insult us by trying to manipulate them for your own purposes. Let us come to our own conclusions and decide how we feel without you telling us how to feel. Move on.
Posted by Stacey, a resident of the Amberwood/Wood Meadows neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 1:56 pm
Cholo, Joey, et al SNAP,
Seriously, what is your endgame here? You've done what you initially set out to do and warn people. For that many are grateful to you and thank you. Keep up that work. People and organizations will do with that information what they will. It isn't up to SNAP to determine what is done. Keep in mind that when stirring up a bee's nest it is best to then run lest you get stung.
Posted by This site should be shut down!, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 2:28 pm
I totally agree with Stacey, Bob, mkm, supportive and supportive,too.
It is no longer a forum for an exchange of feelings, thoughts and discussion, but an vehicle for what is bordering on hate mail. There is a frothing at the mouth that has nothing to do with facts but rather an effort at sensationalism. It is obvious there is a greater agenda than presenting facts. It is clear, a lot of this is coming from unresolved fear, anger, hurt,and pain but retaliation and vindictiveness will not provide healing.
Posted by CCOP Member, a resident of the Heritage Valley neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 2:41 pm
Listen to how you we so called "CHRISTENS" are talking to each other. All SNAP wanted to do was to inform us. They may have done it in an incorrect manner but their main objective was to inform. We all know, whether we like it or not, that P. Greene will be appointed as pastor. They do not care how many of us leave the church or take away our financial support. I also believe that the applause that was given to Fr. Dan on Sunday was strictly for Fr. Dan and what he is going through not in support of P. Greene (now be nice that is my own feeling). I hope that you can find kind words to deal with each other and to use this as an aveneue to help you voice YOUR concerns and not to debate with others unkindly because their views differ from yours. We all need to respect each others viewspoints. My prayer is for PEACE and RESOLUTION for this community. I don't think that I will be long with this parish(after 20 yrs) but I'm sure that a lot of you would say "no loss" over losing my family. That is very hurtful and you would not stick up for me but you will stick up for someone who has mislead us all and done such a lewd act. I will be the one at mass Sunday without the green ribbon on. Thank you SNAP and especially Joey for opening up our eyes.
Posted by parish member, a resident of the Del Prado neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 4:54 pm
I am still hoping Padraig Greene will NOT be our pastor.
Fr. Dan is speaking as if it is a done deal. The detailed arrest information was kept quiet until now, so people have not had time to react to its implications. Maybe a few people knew, but I know for a fact that many faithful, longtime church volunteers had no prior knowledge of his 1999 arrest record. So, in essence it was a secret because most of us do not do background checks! Secrets of this nature are reminiscent of past times when crimes perpetrated on Catholics were hidden from the parish.
The information is late; I hope the discussion is not too late. Angry that I have to be subjected to this mess. I question the judgment of Church leaders who chose to spring this on us at the time (or after) the announcement that P. Greene is the pastor-in-waiting. An arrest for lewd conduct in a public place cannot be ignored. It should have been P. Greene's wake-up call to find another career that would keep have kept him away from young people and parks. I can forgive some actions, but cannot accept him as the pastor of a this large parish. Certain public careers are off-limits to people with this history: teaching, schools administration, psychology, and counseling to name a few. That would be unacceptable, as it would be to have a pastor with an arrest history for lewd conduct.
Posted by Henry, a CCOP Member, a resident of the Ruby Hill neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 5:21 pm
We all need to understand that we would not have known anything about this incident, if the Joey has not spent his time to bring this to our notice. Please thank him for that. All those who have been abused by the priests with charming personalities, there were no Joeys to warn the parents about the danger. We have to understand that the parish council and the Diocese did not want any of the other parishioners know about this. That is why they here hiding this information from the parishioners. I am totally disappointed and feel betrayed by my own church. They do not want anyone to distribute any fliers in their property and that is why several people belonging to the parish council were walking around the parking lots, during last Sunday massses.
Pleasanton residents, especially the CCOP parishioners, would not know about anything about this incident, if Joey and his group, do not spend their time and money to print and distribute fliers. I think, everyone should take it upon himself/herself to warn people about the potential dangers, especially, if it involves children. It is wrong to say that Joey and his team are destroying an "innocent" person. Thanks to all of them.
Disclaimer: I do not know Joey or his group personally and I have never met them. But, as a human being, by the Lord's grace, I am wise enough to understand what they have gone through and what they are trying to do now to warn the people. So, in my pint of view, they are not "sinners" as some one called them here, but they are heroes!!
After reading what is on the Police Report, I pray that the other parishioners understand the gravity of this situation and come to their senses. I am also praying that the church leaders understand the gravity of the situation and see the potential dangers and not move forward with the appointment of Fr. Padraig as the next Pastor.
Posted by Paul, a member of CCOP, a resident of another community, on Nov 20, 2007 at 5:49 pm
After reading what is on the police report, I find it very had to even imagine how the church leaders, are going forward with Fr. Padraig's appointment as the next Pastor. I feel betrayed by the church and its leaders for not coming forward, well in advance, to get the parish community's input in deciding the next Pastor, since this issue is very important to every parishioner. I always believed that this CCOP community respects everyone's views and takes every one's views into account. But I am disappointed in this case.
I know Fr. Padraig for the past several years while he was at CCOP. I enjoyed the masses he celebrated at CCOP. But, I was shocked to know what he has done in the past AS A PRIEST and I find it hard to digest. This issue is not about forgiving but about accountability of one's actions. I respect him as a wonderful human being. But the choices he had made are disgusting. The parish council could have avoided all the embarrassing situation by informing the community and getting input from the church community before recommending Fr. Padraig's name. Now this issue will continue to haunt us for a long time and will continue to divide this wonderful community.
After praying on this issue, with great sadness, I have come to the conclusion that I will not be able to accept him as my next Pastor. May the Lord guide the "church leaders" to find another priest as our Pastor.
Posted by Anne, a member of the Walnut Grove Elementary School community, on Nov 20, 2007 at 6:03 pm
For those of who you are still supporting Fr Greene now that the police report is out... Please reconsider. It's an emabarassment to our community, our Parish, and our faith. I realize that Fr. Greene is human and has made a horrible mistake. I do forgive him. However, as mentioned by many he needs to be held accountable. How can we ever trust him as our pastor? Who's to say he won't do it again? Enough is enough. Let's move on and put this behind us. Fr. Dan, please step up to the plate. Your parish is calling out to you to hear them. Even though some of you doubt this, I believe the future of our Church is at stake here. Thank you and God bless us all!
Posted by Parishoner in Dublin, a resident of Dublin, on Nov 20, 2007 at 6:47 pm
I was terribly disappointed to learn this information about Fr. Greene. I've been in the parish for five years and was sad when he left to go to San Jose. He is VERY likeable. He is VERY charismatic and has an amazing sense of humor. I just wonder if we would be having this debate at all if he were not so likeable? I find myself wanting to give him "the benefit of the doubt", but then I think about the circumstances. While it may not have involved another person, it shows very questionable character. While we certainly forgive his sin and show compassion for what he is going through at this time, do we really want to put him in such a position of authority? I know him to give great homilies and be an effective minister, but this colors how I can trust him. If he had been caught with a gay man in his own quarters I would have an easier time making sense of this. But a public restroom with what seems to be the intent of "cruising" for another man??? An ANONYMOUS person?? I just think this goes beyond reasonable circumstances that we should forget and move on from. All of our actions have consequences. Let's forgive, but should we put him in the highest position in our Catholic community?
Posted by unclehomerr.., a resident of the Downtown neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 7:25 pm
If this man had a secret gambling problem and had embezzled from a prior church, I'd doubt he'd be nominated for pastor here. I'd sure be interested in the job description and qualifications required for a pastor's job; can't have a woman.. or, a married man.. but, a man who masturbates in public is ok??
"They" want us to believe that this behavior is not a choice.. "they're born that way".. unless it serves another purpose to claim.. "I'm cured".
It's not my job to forgive.. that's up to God. It's not my job to blindly accept.. 'God grant me the courage to change the things I can'. This man will not be my 'guide' as to faith and morals. I will attend mass.. because I believe in the celebration, but it will not be as a member of this community[?].. I'll be the one standing in the back. I'll attend, but I won't participate. If he has the audacity to offer a homily, I'll go outside. If he has the nerve to offer the eucharist.. I'll be in a different line.
He's lucky that I wasn't the next one to walk into that restroom. I've been going into men's rooms for 60 years and no one has ever turned and exposed himself.. let alone continue doing what the officer saw. If it had been me, I think he'd be on the floor and under citizen's arrest.
Posted by troubled, a resident of the Pleasanton Heights neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 8:19 pm
I agree with Stacey, Bob, mkm, supportive and supportive,too!
Joey and Cholo...you should reconsider handing out fliers which sensationalize the true facts. If that flier gets into the wrong hands you WILL be held accountable for slander! If you can not deliver the unbiased facts in this forum, I am fearful what you are printing on fliers and handing out at schools.
Don't you think you are also harming children in a way that is evil. What is your intent? Inform or deliver your hateful agenda! We all understand what SNAP stands for, but it takes a lot of energy out of your own life to live with so much anger and hate and to take it out on innocent people.
Fr. Padraig is now suffering the greatest of his punishments. I don't think that what we are doing to him now is appropriate. These issues are being discussed within the CCOP community and that's where they should stay.
Posted by community... member, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 8:47 pm
I guess I have been an active member of the community of CCOP, also known to me as St. Augustine Church, Pleasanton for thirty years... before Pleasanton Valley was a neighborhood! ( you missed a neighborhood, Jeb)
WOW.. I cannot quite believe this is happening in our quiet town, and even more quietly on a public forum, since the CCOP has offered no area for public comments. WHAT A SHAME... WHAT A SHAM! When will the committee of leadership who were discerning ( for over a year ) in choosing Fr. Greene come forward and write down the criteria for selecting the new leader. leader. Were they even given a criteria? Were they given all the specifics, as we see them in the news? How does the Diocese of Oakland choose their top leaders?
It has been established this man was a fine man, good priest, and could give a HEARTY welcome... OH, No, Not, Never... this diocesan and/or parish decision is wrong. Is it the responsibility for a group of leaders to choose a man BASED ON THE DIOCESE'S AND COMMITTEE'S FORGIVENESS and OUR IGNORANCE for a leadership role in our community? WHAT WERE THEY (that would include Fr. Dan and the Bishop of Oakland THINKING?)
Posted by Troubled, a resident of the Pleasanton Heights neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 8:53 pm
Cameron...this is what I mean...if you would have taken the time to read the entire blog you would understand my position. I was the first one to post the police report, which was subsequently removed by Pleasanton Weekly because I did not sensor it.
The blog has gotten out of control for many reasons. CCOP needs to address the parishioners on the status of Fr. Padraig. There is far to much interpretation of the facts for newcomers to establish their own opinions without biased and hateful comments. Initially this forum was being used for information sharing...it is not a means to attack each other. Exactly what SNAPwants!
I am a devout Catholic. I am not pleased with Fr. Padraig or the way CCOP has handled the situation.
Posted by Henry, a member of CCOP, a resident of the Ruby Hill neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 9:13 pm
I am also a devout Catholic and I agree that the CCOP and the Church leaders have NOT handled this situation very well. The Church leades have several means, like church bulletins, news papers and web sites to force their decisions but ordinary parishioner, like me, has only this forum to discuss and find out what my fellow parishioners are thinking and how they are feeling about this issue. I really appreciate PW for providing this service. This discussion, whatever the nature may be, definitely helps everyone living in this wonderful town to understand this issue. The church leaders still do not want, even to consider talking to all the parishioners, via a town hall setting.
Posted by "Another Cameron", a resident of the Country Fair neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 9:24 pm
Must go on the record to clarify that the "Cameron" of recent posts is not the Cameron who writes a column for another local newspaper. That other Cameron is reading these threads intently... and is also a devout - and torn/distraught - Catholic and CCOP member.
Posted by troubled, a resident of the Pleasanton Heights neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 9:36 pm
I know...I couldn't agree with you more Greg! I just want to know what is going on within the church. At little transparency at this time would be good for all of us. If anyone knows what happened at the council meeting last night feel free to anonymously add your comments in.
Posted by CCOP member, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 9:42 pm
What a sad statement about our church that its members must rely on this forum, that is at times riddled with hatred and misinformation. But, aside from the cover of last week's bulletin, and a few comments by Father Dan at the end of Mass, there seems to be no effort from CCOP to actively communicate with its members on this issue, unless perhaps one is on the Council or other committee? I don't know. I've heard nothing. So, where else are we to go for at least clues as to what is going on other than to this forum??
I pray Father Dan, the bishop, the Transition team and parish council are reconsidering the decision and will change it soon for everyone's benefit. I forgive Father Greene, God forgives him, etc., but he should NOT be pastor of CCOP. Upholding the current decision is only dividing the church community. The decision makers made a bad decision that is creating grief for EVERYONE. They can stop the madness. I am ready to leave CCOP if the decision stands.
Posted by Another CCOP member, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 10:31 pm
The lack of transparency with the church stinks. It appears Fr. Greene is going to stay so we must continue with this protest. Eventually we will get Fr. Greene removed but it could take some time. Once the plate donations diminish and his authority is ignored the Church will ultimately have to make a change. The Bishop cannot allow Pleasanton to become a totally disfunctional parish.
Posted by Bill, a resident of the Beratlis Place neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 10:50 pm
I was told about this blog by my son. Does anyone realize this blog is made up of approx. 20 people. CCOP is over 2000 STRONG...CCOP can afford to lose those who cast the first stone. Father Padraig is an honorable man with sin. He will lead this parish to greater heights and I will be there to witness. Those of you against him, that is your choice. You really need to go in peace. There are many places of worship in our community.
Posted by Carol, a resident of the Birdland neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 10:59 pm
Just noticed that Fr. Dan's message on the home page of the CCOP web site is new(er): Web Link. Interesting addition to his message includes the following statement from Fr. Dan: "Our Pastoral Transition Team was never asked to recommend or comment on specific names for this assignment, but rather to provide information on the kind of pastor that was wanted and the directions and priorities that the parish needed going into the future. I was not asked for specific names either...."
Bill,thanks for your input. There are actually hundreds participating, at the very least by reading. This blog is helping people digest some difficult concepts by reading various viewpoints, both in favor of and against Fr. Greene's appointment. People are talking about this blog outside this web site. They are reading it and talkingg at home, in the office, at coffee shops. I know because I've witnessed it. This blog has helped some affirm their agreement with the appointment of Fr. Greene. It has also directed others see another side they might not have considered, and many have changed their minds. I urge you to read through some of the information. Warning - A lot of it is not so nice. But much of it is informative, useful.
Posted by Joey Piscitelli, a resident of another community, on Nov 20, 2007 at 11:03 pm
You Said: (Joey) should "reconsider handing out fliers which sensationalize the true facts. If that flier gets into the wrong hands you WILL be held accountable for slander!"
What are the wrong hands? Where's the slander?
Fr. Greene committed a lewd act at a park/playground. The Diocese admits he committed a lewd act. He admits he committed a lewd act.
An undercover policemen witnessed him committing the lewd act at the park.
I went to the playground, and I invite you, and anyone else to see where the act occurred. Then you may realize my alarm.
Fr. Greene spent 2 days in jail for committing the lewd act. Fr. Greene therfore, has a history which includes a lewd act at a park/playground.
The Diocese has a "No More Secrets" policy. I released the information to the parishioners per the No More Secrets policy.
It is unfortunate that you do not agree about the truth as I do. Everything I said was truthful, therefore, no one can say I slandered a Priest who committed a lewd act in public.
That said, no matter how much you dislike me for bringing the truth to: parents who care that a Priest has been lewd;
and Parents who defend a Priest that has been lewd;
I shall continue to alert parents of the potential danger that may occur to children when a Priest commits a lewd act in public.
The reason I do this is not to be mean or hurtful, but to alert those parents who do care. Several dozen parents have thanked me, and that means I have succeeded. The parents or people who are angry at me for bringing the truth forward, have no impact on stopping me, that is merely an unfortunate consequence of bringing a sad truth to light. There are always people who defend Priests who commit lewd acts. Always.
I maintain that when a man commits a lewd act in public at a park, that is a potential danger to children. Children frequent the park.
I maintain that parents should always be cautious with their childrens safety, and that absolutely includes when around men who have committed a lewd act in public.
I will continue to alert parents as long as I see Clergy who have committed lewd acts, near, or around their children. This includes at nearby schools and parks.
If I can save only 1 child in the entire city of Pleasanton from any potential threat, or danger, it is worth all of the shots anyone has taken at me, or the hammering , or the threats.
So ("troubled"), I don't think you will ever understand this, but your approval, or your disapproval, has no effect on me.
Posted by troubled, a resident of the Pleasanton Heights neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 11:16 pm
Joey...it is very obvious that you want Fr. Padraig out. We all understand our position and ability to extrapolate your ideals from the truth.
Nowhere in the police report does it say that there were children involved in the incident. That is your opinion and people should understand that.
On the whole you have done a good job at alerting parishoners of the situation but you are now manipulating the situation. Everyone is aware of your agenda and you are only doing a dishonor to SNAP by sensationalizing.
You should reasses your definition of "saved". For the record, I completely understand your frame of mine and your manipulation or spinning will not affect my position.
Posted by Jill, a resident of the Downtown neighborhood, on Nov 20, 2007 at 11:30 pm
Troubled,,,,i don't agree w/ the Snap methods necessarily, but your post is kinda ridiculous. No, THIS TIME, (i would make that in huger caps if i could!) there was no child involved, BUT it was in a YOUTH SPORTS PARK RESTROOM...and a child COULD EASILY HAVE WALKED IN. GET IT...it IS about children!?
Posted by Joey piscitelli, a resident of another community, on Nov 20, 2007 at 11:37 pm
Dear Mr. Troubled,
Your apparent inability to understand that a kids park and playground, being the chosen spot for a lewd act, is a threat to children, is mind blowing.
Maybe I can explain.
Children play at the park. The man was commiting a lewd act at the park. The man chose the park. He knew it was illegal to commit a lewd act at the park. The police were alarmed, and sent an undecover cop to the park. He caught the man in the act.
Does it register now?
And yes, I do have an agenda. Protect Kids from potential threats.
Call it dishonor, call it a spin, call it manipulation, whatever.
Nothing you say will stop the truth. Or me from continuing to tell it.
Posted by CCOP Parishioner, a resident of the Highland Oaks neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 12:12 am
The Church's sex abuse scandal was/is a disgrace. As if the pain of the victims was not bad enough, those who were abused by priests were abused again by a Church hierarchy who cared more about the perpetrators and the Church's image than about justice or their pain. The anger and pain of these victims is legitimate and they deserve our compassion, our prayers and our best efforts to make sure nothing like this ever happens again. However, it seems that some have not healed to the point where they can discern that using one's pain to injure others only traps them further in their pain.
By now, it should be apparent to anyone who reads this blog that this is where the SNAP members who are directing the actions against Fr. Padraig are coming from. While they may have convinced themselves otherwise, their actions clearly demonstrate that they are not motivated by concern for our children or our faith community, but their own agenda, which is to wreak vengence on the Church who has hurt them so much - even if it means the destruction of another human being and the destruction of a beautiful, vibrant faith community. They deserve our compassion but not our complicity in their destructive behavior.
As CCOP continues to move through this troubled time, I pray that whatever our differences and the eventual outcome of these events, we remain a community that is faithful to the Law of Love, for which Jesus Christ endured torture and death. For it is Love, not vengeance, which raised Him on the third day.
Posted by CHOLO, a resident of Livermore, on Nov 21, 2007 at 12:20 am
Not so fast, PLEASE define "mess"? The Parish Council is discussing a very complex situation troubled. How come you think that they have a responsibility to tell you anything? Isn't it private? Have you ever been called upon by the Bishop to help the diocese make any major decisions? Policy matters? Pastoral appointments? Theological or legal issues? Diocese budget?
How come it's important for you to claim credit for posting a police record? Please explain. It's also clear troubled that you flip flop on Fr. Padraig. What are your honest thoughts about the bishop? So far he smells like a rose! Agree?
A kids playground and a toilet in the park. Fr. Greene gets busted for violating California law. Greene goes to jail. He is subjected to a mysterious treatment that nobody bothers to explain? What's the treatment model? Do you know troubled? How come all of this info was such a secret to parish members? There a many children that hang out and play at the sports center and use the toilet.
I don't think that you're looking for honest responses. I ask again troubled, a you a diocese operative? And, what exactly do you know about clergy child sex abuse/violence? Has St. Augustines ever provided the parish community with appropriate training re: clergy sexual abuse. Who were the trainers? Diocese reps? Please explain.
It must be frustrating to be so poorly informed and to understand that the officials don't care. troubled, you can't control anything or anybody and it seems to be eating away from the inside out. You have a right to ask what is going on but don't expect that anybody has a need to inform you. Happy Thanksgiving and get some rest, we all deserve it.
Posted by Joey Piscitelli, a resident of another community, on Nov 21, 2007 at 8:19 am
I am glad you asked. The playground is the same as it was in 1999. The bathroom is the same. The bathroom has no stall doors, and the main center of the bathroom where he was caught is about 10 ft by 10 ft wide open.
I invite anyone to go to the park/playground with me to see the site, especially skeptics.I have an open invitation to Fr. Greene and Fr. Danielson and Bishop Vigneron to go to the playground with me and any parishioners.
As far as re-creating the level of activity of children, most parents who know of this highly publicized situation do not allow their children to go there alone now, and Greene was arrested on March 3, and this is November 20.
Would you like to hear from parents who adamantly defended Clergy they had known for 10 years, and then their own children had acts committed against them? Also, read about local Priest Fr. Vincent Breen, and those who defended him.
This is a public issue. This is not about defending Fr. Greene, because you believe if you defend him, you are defending the Catholic Church and it's teachings, and Jesus' teachings about forgiveness.
This is about protecting children, because we learn from historical mistakes, that people who commit lewd acts should not be placed in a position of power, and "tested" to prove whether or not they will repeat an offense. Making a gambling bet, with childrens safety the
the stake, is not the way to prove you think it won't happen again.
Because you don't know if it will happen again.
As responsible adults, we see warning signs,and we usually do not "test" prior offenders in public positions. For some reason, when the same situation occurs at some Catholic positions, some people think the issue is about defending their faith, or forgiveness.
For the record, I forgive Fr. Greene, he seems very troubled to me, I have met and talked with him, and I think he needs continued therapy. I do not, however, think he should be "tested" on anybodys children, to bet whether or not he will commit abother lewd act.
Posted by member ccop, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 9:08 am
The "Leadership Placement Board", which falls under the Department of Clergy Services in the Oakland Diocese, consulted the Bishop on his decision to appoint Father Greene as pastor. The director of this department is Rev. Ray Zielezienski whose email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
The bishop's email address is Bpvigneron@oakdiocese.org
Posted by New Blogger, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 9:17 am
How about starting another blog where no hate is allowed. Anger is OK, a healthy part of the process. But keep the hatred and meanness to yourself -- especially you, Cholo. If you can't do this without lambasting the exact people you claim to be wanting to protect,then go away and start your own blog.
Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore, on Nov 21, 2007 at 10:57 am
New Blogger, you sure know how to hurt a person. How does it feel New Blogger to know that you have no real power in this situation and having to accept that the bishop doesn't care what you think or feel?
English is my second language and I'm trying my best to express myself in English. My parents just walked across the border and made themselves at home. They said that we had to learn to speak English and obey the laws of the US. The Catholic church supports immigrants, even those that violate the law, like Fr. Greene. However, healthy immigrants don't hang out in toilets showing off, sniffing out the smells in the air and waiting for things to go up or down. Children must and will always come first....that is what God wants. And, God is happy when immigrants are good citizens that respect the law.
I have no idea how to start a blog and I would if I knew how. The best thing about this blog is we all get to practice Free Speech!
In many countries, there is no such thing as Free Speech. I am grateful that I can post on this blog even if I'm not appreciated by some people. That's what Free Speech is about.
I would also like to say that I believe that much of the frustration of some posters is about not being fully informed by anybody and to have to pick and dig to find out what's happening. The Diocese of Oakland doesn't want you to be fully informed so that you can make informed decisions about anything. In a sense, what the bishop is saying is take it or leave it. So far, I like all of the bloggers and there is nothing as neat as being able to disagree and not be imprisoned or simply disappear in the night. That's why lots of us come to the US. We can live past age 20 in the US!
Fr. Greene broke the law and there is not much you can do about it right now but stew. When the bishop returns, much of this will be deleted so he may not have the opportunity to read what the community of faith is thinking and feeling. You deserve better than that but I predict that he will not hear you calls for help. He will ignore your calls for help. Sad.
Posted by member, a resident of the Del Prado neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 1:13 pm
I'm new to this blog. It is sad that I have to gather information via this format, since my own church doesn't feel the need to divulge the whole story.
For the gentleman who visited the park in Oakland, I have a question that has perhaps been answered already, but bear with me. Are there stalls as well as urinals in that bathroom? If so, I am questioning why he didn't choose the privacy of a stall in which to 'relieve' himself. Just trying to gather information so I can make a more informed decision, although I'm inclined to find that kind of behavior out in public to be repulsive.
Posted by A Mother, a member of the Pleasanton Middle School community, on Nov 21, 2007 at 1:47 pm
The Pleasanton Weekly has posted the police report on the Greene case on a separate blog. The only comment so far is by a poster who does not find Greene’s behavior and verbal exchange with the undercover policeman disturbing or abusive. I think it’s clear from the transcript that the policeman voluntarily subjected himself to a sexually abusive experience in order to protect others – children? teens? a young or adult male prostitute? Yes, prostitutes are sexually abused by the person who seeks and solicits their bodies. Anyone who is treated like an object for someone else’s gratification is dehumanized in the process and abused. This is the official teaching of the Catholic Church; see Evangelium Vitae: Web Link
I was shocked and deeply disturbed when I learned the facts about Fr. Greene’s arrest, and I continue to be stymied by people who do not find his behavior shocking, deeply disturbing, and disqualifying for the job of Pastor of a church. I am especially stymied about why the Bishop does not find Greene’s behavior shocking, deeply disturbing, and disqualifying for the job of Pastor.
I did a little Google research to try to understand how Bishops handle these kinds of cases, and I ran across a site that explained the way sex abuse allegations were handled in the Oakland Diocese before the clergy sexual abuse scandal broke a few years ago. Then Vicar General of the Diocese of Oakland said this in a deposition:
“During a 2004 deposition, lawyers asked [Fr.] George Crespin, former chancellor for the Diocese of Oakland, why he didn't include reports on priests accused of pederasty in the church archives. ‘That was the instruction we had from the lawyers,’ Crespin replied. [See “Games Bishops Play: Why DA Bill Hill Should Be Wary,” Dallas Morning News, February 15, 2005.] Web Link
Records of clergy sexual misconduct were not retained in the files of the Diocese of Oakland [they were shredded? burned?], and they certainly were not shared with the flock.
Upon reading this, I had a troubling thought – another in a long line of troubling thoughts since this whole mess broke in Pleasanton. Is the Bishop not shocked and deeply disturbed by Fr. Greene’s behavior because, in his career in the Church, he has seen so much worse? Is Fr. Greene’s behavior “tame” compared to other reports of priestly misconduct that come across the desks of Catholic bishops in America, which the people never hear anything about? Has the pervasive moral decay that plagues our culture – and that threatens to destroy the hope and the future of our young – taken such strong root in the Church herself that our Bishop no longer finds Greene’s sexual offense shocking and deeply disturbing in a priest? I pray not.
It is hard to believe that Greene’s is the best resume that came across the Bishop’s desk for head pastor of the largest parish in the Diocese. If Greene’s is the best – if there is no priest in Oakland more fit to lead the Pleasanton parish than Greene – God help us.
Posted by Diane, a resident of the Birdland neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 3:02 pm
I really wish the Church would hold a town hall meeting on this rather than dragging this whole thing out. Let them hear how we the parishoners feel about Fr. Greene as our pastor. Fr. Dan posted an updated letter on the CCOP website. I am truely disappointed with him as well as the Bishop. They are our leaders. They are still in major denial. They just don't get it.
Posted by I read it...did you?, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 3:20 pm
It seems that some who read the police report - don't finish it. This is what the last line says: On Nov. 17, 1999, after verifying that the rehabilitation program had been completed successfully, Judge Castellanos dismissed all charges.
Had the judge reason to believe there was not complete success in tratment, he could of, would have, imposed additional requirements or restrictions. He did not. Fr Greene DOES NOT have a criminal record. CHARGES WERE DISMISSED. To implicate otherwise is inaccurate and is a defamation of character issue.
I agree with Joe. I believe now it is simply a few of you who wish to inflict pain and misery on him for the past sins of the church or in retaliation for your own pain.
You, We, the community know of no other other incidents. Infrances and suggestions of continued incidents are scare and fear tactics.
Posted by Mom Too, a resident of the Val Vista neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 3:53 pm
I'm also a concerned mom. It's true Fr. Greene does not have a criminal record. It was only an arrest and was dismissed. But I can't get past the issue that someone who'd do a thing like he did - even if he was put thru therapy and charges were dismissed - is going to be leading our parish. I really like Fr. Greene! I just think we should have a better leader. Fr. Dan's great standard is a good example. I don't know what I'll tell my kids when theyre old enough to know about Fr. Greene's arrest. How will I explain it?
I'm still with the church, still faithful and .... still frustrated. Maybe those who think this is OK can help me come back around to Fr. Greene. I want to, but it's hard.
Posted by Mom Too, a resident of the Val Vista neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 4:34 pm
Friends - The new letter from Fr.Dan on the church's website indicates that he didn't make recommendations for the new pastor. Neither did the transition team, it appears. That said, I'm still so torn and aching over this. I don't know what or whom to believe, or where to turn. I'm really hoping the bishop just makes this go away and removes the appointment of Fr. Greene. Many friends of mine feel the same way,too. We're such a great community at CCOP and this is just eating us up. Fr. Dan's new letter is here: Web Link.
Posted by memberCCOP, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 4:47 pm
Many parishioners are torn up about this and wonder what they can do. As parents, we are models to our children, and our actions always speak louder than words. If the decision is upheld, our only choice is to stay at CCOP or leave and go to another local parish. I know I will leave and go to another parish.
Posted by John, a resident of the Downtown neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 4:57 pm
"You, We, the community know of no other other incidents. Infrances and suggestions of continued incidents are scare and fear tactics"...BINGO!!!! KEY word here being...We KNOW of no further incidents. We didn't know about this one til recently?? What else is Fr. Greene hiding???
Fr. Dan says on that weblink, that Fr. Greene had every intention of telling the Parish teams AFTER jan 1...hm...AFTER he'd already been "sworn in" and his job wasn't in jeopardy??? Good grief.
Posted by ticked, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 5:10 pm
Oh, the questions and thoughts I have.
First of all, Cholo, English should be your first language. You do live in America, right? Are you a legal citizen? Are you American? Do you pay taxes? Were you abused and by whom? Is this why you hang on the shirttails of Joey; fueling his fire? So many questions, so little time.
Second of all, you are mean. See? I can be too; and will be for a minute. (But it gets no one anywhere but hurt). Your demeaning insults, if heard by your family members (any children?), is usually a danger to children as well. Are you hurting children now by your actions? They learn this behavioral stuff, you know. Here in America, we call that a cycle (of abuse, poverty, whatever is the issue). With that being said, I have questions for both you and Joey.
Do you masterbate? Have you ever driven under the influence? Ever try drugs? Ever got drunk in front of kids? Ever cheated on your spouse? Ever hit your/a child? Ever watched an R rated movie with kids around? Ever listen to music with foul language in front of kids? Ever swore in front of them? The list could go on forever but if you can answer 'yes' to just one of them, then you are a danger to kids as well. Seriously! They absorb like sponges.
Right now you two are doing nothing more than masterbating a community to keep them 'jacked up'. Joey, we don't even know where you live. Why here and for how long? Where is your proverbial line drawn in the sand? When Fr. Padraig is back in Ireland? If Fr. Padraig commits suicide because of this excessive abuse and bantering you're doing, will you be held liable? Again, so many questions and so little time.
This rambling of thoughts is only because I have followed this issue with great irritation and frustration and my mind is swirling with thoughts. You have gone way out of your way to destroy a target. It's shredding a community; one in which you two do not even belong in.
How many others (priests) have you destroyed? Where are they now? In mental institutions? Why are you so afraid of what COULD happen? Is your sky always falling? Where's your faith or don't you have any? Were you ever taught forgiveness? Did you not learn about Jesus and Mary Magdeline? "Go and sin no more". Mary became Jesus' strongest follower and He welcomed her with open arms. How about those disciples Jesus chose to follow Him? A motley crew they were. Oh yea, then there was the cross. "Forgive them for they know not what they do." Too bad you struggle with Jesus' teachings.
Personally, your continued actions to this matter has only convinced me you have an agenda and it's not a positive one. Grow up and be gone!
Now, I must go and pray for forgiveness as I was quite mean just now. I will pray for you as well as Fr Padraig. We are all in the same boat. Let's not rock it anymore.
Posted by A Mother, a member of the Pleasanton Middle School community, on Nov 21, 2007 at 5:13 pm
Dear Mom Too,
My kids are old enough to have found out about this: it's all over town and all over the internet. They now know exactly what Fr. Greene did, and they want nothing to do with him. I will not tell them they are wrong to feel the way they do. They are boys: I think their reaction is normal and healthy. I do not think my boys are wrong, and I will not try to coerce them to have respect for this priest. Now we have to figure out what to do about church, since we are faithful Catholics.
My kids remind me of the boy in the Hans Christian Andersen's tale "The Emperor's New Clothes":
"... A child, however, who had no important job and could only see things as his eyes showed them to him, went up to the carriage.
Posted by LM, a member of the Vintage Hills Elementary School community, on Nov 21, 2007 at 5:19 pm
If the decision is upheld, many parishioners may choose to leave the CCOP and attend another local parish. However, a "local parish" will still be in the Oakland Diocese and under the same leadership of those who are recommending Fr Greene's appointment in the first place. And if Greene's is one of the better resumes to cross their desks, then it really does make you wonder what the "resumes" of other priests and clergy officials must look like.
Posted by Joey Piscitelli, a resident of another community, on Nov 21, 2007 at 5:49 pm
You have asked me the question above in your comment, "Why are you so afraid of what could happen?"
A very good question.
I am really glad you asked that question. It gets to the heart of what this is all about.
The answer is: Because I have seen "what could happen".
I have seen what could happen when people ignore the red flags. I have seen what could happen when people say that "all he did was one bad thing, and we don't know of any other thing bad he did".
That's like saying "I only drove faster than the speeding limit only one time in my entire life, and I got caught, and got a speeding ticket that one time".
Sure you did. Only once. And the cop was there the one and only time.
This isn't a speeding ticket. This is about a man who seeked out a specific playground. A specific playground that vice squad cops seeked out. A specific place for a specific thing.
No matter what name calling you spew at me, no matter what you accuse me of, no matter how or what you think of me, I will not go away, and I will continue to try to protect children who may be around a man who committed a lewd act in public.
If you think I am a nut for that, or like some people have said "damaged because I was violated by a priest", why don't you meet me in person and chat civilly. I have lots of information for you. i am a parent myself, I have 2 children, and three little dogs.
I am not the evil anti-Christ, and you will never see me protesting at a church where there is no Clergy accused of lewd acts.
Posted by Anne, a resident of the Birdland neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 5:56 pm
I don't know Joey or Cholo.... But I do know that if it weren't for Joey we would have "missed the boat" in knowing the history of Fr. Greene. I also think that if Fr Dan and coherts were straight forward from the beginning, no matter how difficult it was, they should have been. For goodness sake.... That's the job of a leader!We wouldn't have relied on Joey to provide us what this information.
I myself feel betrayed and let down by the Catholic Church. I am not going to change my religion or anything... But the Church has a lot of explaining to do. As you can read from the statements above, many besides Joey and Cholo are upset. They are not to blame.... They made us aware of a situation that we as parishoners should have been made aware of by the Church. This was not done. Communication is key in this time of crisis. I ask what is the Church doing to make sure they hear all its voices?
Posted by Diane, a resident of the Birdland neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 6:54 pm
Communication...Good point. The PW has been our only outlet of communication regarding this issue. The CCOP website has an update from Fr Dan once a week. Interestingly, we can't leave comments or our thoughts on this issue with them. We can however, submit a prayer which I reccomend all of us do. Let's pray that we can get through this and keep our Catholic community united. May we also pray that our leaders stand up for what is right and hear all of our voices.
Posted by Thankful Convert, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 8:09 pm
It is apparent, as a Parent, as a Father, as a Husband and as a Friend, we may not be able to perfect each one of these qualities as well as we would like. We do know though and understand a Mother's bond to protect their child, begins prior to coming into the physical world. A Parent's Faith, with what the eyes can not see, regardless where their Faith comes from, perhaps can not have the burden to bear this responsibility. That is understandable. Everyone knows this situation will not go away tomorrow,Thanksgiving. My suggestion is, consider avoiding dialouge on this forum, as of now. Prepare yourself for Thanksgiving, reflection and how grateful we are to be alive. That is only what I think. I am Catholic. I struggle to always do the right thing. I am a good person. I have a problem communicating. Tonight was easy. Happy Thanksgiving!
Posted by dan mcnevin, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 8:18 pm
someone close to fr. dan or bp vigneron should print this commnet plg so vig and other leaders see it forever...Fr. Padraig is going thru damange /c of this, the community is riled up (which I think is healhty) and I suspect there will be parents who keep thier kid and/or their money from the bishop since he kept this information secret. Lets assume padraig is toast as the pastor of this community. Now. we need to go up the hierarchy and find out how they kept thid quiet. learn about the leader's dysfunction and a local faith person can be better at protecting kids
Posted by A Mother, a member of the Pleasanton Middle School community, on Nov 21, 2007 at 8:34 pm
Happy Thanksgiving to you, Thankful Convert, and thanks for your good words. I am thankful that Jesus is Lord of His Church and the Great Shepherd of the People of God. We can trust our Lord Jesus to defend and purify His Church. God's will be done, and God's mercy and grace be upon all of us Thanksgiving -- Fr. Dan, Fr. Jim, Fr. Joy, Fr. Padraig, all of our Deacons and lay leaders, and all the people in the Catholic Community of Pleasanton. Mary our Mother, pray for us.
Posted by mac, a resident of the Bordeaux Estates neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2007 at 10:44 pm
Joey - Thanks for taking up this charge and standing for all that is innocent and right, especially where children can become the victims. I've enjoyed reading your consistently accurate and calm discussion and debate. It is amazing that some find it angry and out of line. I appreciate your style.
Mother from PMS and A Parent - Agree with you fellow moms!
Because this was done in "our" public places it does become a public issue. Laws must be applied and we all have a right to know what is being done to prevent this person from offending again. It is about "protecting children".
St. Augustine's members, it is your job to decide what you want in your religious life and within your religious walls. None of us can impact that. You pick your destiny with your religious leadership. Tolerate or demand, but it is your choice.
The rest of us can worry about the public implications.
Posted by Stacey, a resident of the Amberwood/Wood Meadows neighborhood, on Nov 22, 2007 at 12:08 am
Actually no. It doesn't mean "guilty". Not according to our legal code. If you are jailed that doesn't automatically mean you are guilty of a crime. Even though Fr Greene subsequently went to therapy and that seems like an admission of guilt, it still doesn't legally mean "guilty". The judge dismissed all charges.
Posted by Mary, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 22, 2007 at 8:51 am
PW-You need to close down this thread or only allow registered users. Cholo has made his comments known. This began as a beneficial way for people to express their opinions. If you look at the last five days, Cholo is attacking people. Please either shut down or only allow registered users. Thank you.