Fr. Corapi’s Lawsuit against Accuser (Full Text)

by Jimmy Akin

in Current Affairs

Corapi2 At the bottom of this post I'm linking a copy of the legal pleading by which Fr. Corapi filed suit against his accuser.

Many people have understandably been curious as to what the lawsuit says, and it is a matter of public record that can serve to shed light on the case. (In particular, it tells Fr. Corapi's side of the story via his lawyers.)

Although I have unredacted copies of the pleadings in the case, I am including one here that omits the name of the accuser (a) because although the accuser's name is now widely known, she was outed and has not to date chosen to make significant public statements on the subject and (b) because I do not have the original copies of the pleadings scanned at this point. I may post more, including unredacted ones, in the future.

I would call attention to two particular parts of the pleading.

First, there is paragraph 15 of the complaint, which contains Fr. Corapi's summary of the accusers allegations (Corapi maintains these are false; click image to enlarge):

Pleading15

Second, I would call attention to paragraph 28, which contains an excerpt from the non-disclosure agreement that Corapi allegedly paid $100,000 to the accuser to sign (click image to enlarge):

Pleading28

More later.

PDF OF REDACTED COMPLAINT.

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{ 89 comments }

Dan July 6, 2011 at 1:16 pm

So its Fathers word against the womans word.

Timothy July 6, 2011 at 1:25 pm

And the word of Fr Sheehan.

Daniel T July 6, 2011 at 1:34 pm

What I wonder now is if Father Corapi has actually seen the letter, or merely been made aware of what the letter said. His lawsuit would seem to be without any merit if it turns out that the letter was not written by the defendant, but by another party who was perhaps familiar with the circumstances. It was being said on blogs back in April that someone had heard from the letter writer and that she was talking about Father and her mother, and that the mother wasn’t talking due to an agreement. So will the evidence include an actual copy of the letter, and who wrote the letter? If it was not the defendant, I’m not sure how the case could go anywhere other than being dismissed.

Dan July 6, 2011 at 1:40 pm

“And the word of Fr Sheehan.”
Is it Bishop Sheehan?
I still believe this is all a pack of lies trumped up by the Lavender Mafia, because they hate orthodoxy.

Mary July 6, 2011 at 1:42 pm

And the word of Bishop Gracida and Fr. Flanagan, Founder of SOLT who advised Fr. Corapi to file this suit knowing the full details.

Daniel T July 6, 2011 at 1:47 pm

After looking at P35 with its reference to his priestly faculties, I would wonder what bearing there might be if it were to turn out he had been previously acting without priestly faculties. As he lived outside of his community for years (and apparently they had made efforts for him to return to community), it would seem he should have been required to obtain faculties from the diocese of Helena where he resided as per Canon 745. He had indicated that the majority of his work did not require faculties (which was not entirely true since his preaching as a priest at church sanctioned events should have required faculties), so if it were to turn out that he had already been getting by improperly without faculties was he truly damaged by the accusations??

Maggie C Palmer July 6, 2011 at 1:56 pm

I’m curious why a Catholic priest would need to pay anyone 100,000 as compensation for a non disclosure agreement to be signed. Quite a bit of money for a person who professed the evangelical councils.

Dan July 6, 2011 at 1:59 pm

Could Fr Corapi have gotten faculties to preach in the diocese’s he went to by the local Ordinary?
I was under the impression that he had to have the Ordinaries permission to come to a diocese, at least that is what Fr told me in 2005 when I saw him in New York.

Dolorosa July 6, 2011 at 1:59 pm
Fox McDonald July 6, 2011 at 2:00 pm

I would just love to see what has motivated this unsolicited character assassination by the staff of NCR and EWTN? Stunning is the sinfulness. Stunning. God bless you, NCR and the EWTN family. You are soooo going to need it, even if he is guilty. Wow. Going to Mass now… I have actually remained involved in this whole thing on Facebook and his blog and can still receive Communion in a state of grace. And yes, I’m saying exactly what you think I’m saying, and you can print this and castigate me all you like for it. You and the NCR members are still guilty of deliberate, malicious, gravely sinful acts. And you continue to do it suggesting utterly no remorse and no firm purpose of amendment. Wow. National Formerly Catholic Register.

Dan July 6, 2011 at 2:13 pm

Fox,
Here Here!

The Sarge July 6, 2011 at 2:24 pm

“I would just love to see what has motivated this unsolicited character assassination by” Fox McDonald.

BillyHW July 6, 2011 at 2:26 pm

PDF?

jkm July 6, 2011 at 2:45 pm

“And the word of Bishop Gracida and Fr. Flanagan, Founder of SOLT who advised Fr. Corapi to file this suit knowing the full details.”
According to Corapi. And communicated to him via Fr. Tony Anderson, a SOLT priest stationed in Mexico. And Bishop Gracida admits he hasn’t spoken to Corapi in a long time. I’m not sure Fr Flanagan has spoken to anyone at all in years.

Elizabeth Shearer July 6, 2011 at 2:50 pm

This is sad indeed. I don’t understand what good it is doing to post this information and information like it. I feel like all that’s missing are you blowing raspberries, doing Bullwinkle ears while saying “Ha ha, told you so!” What’s lost here is that, as the Body of Christ, we are ALL very deeply and profoundly affected by this turn of events. When one of us falls, we all go down hard. PLEASE resolve to use your talents and gifts to heal and repair the harm done. We are all suffering here. Faithful Catholics everywhere have to lick these wounds…again. This is yet another scandal we have to find a way to explain to our children and pray they understand.
Mr. Akin, I have had great respect for you for many years. I’ve learned a lot from you and I pray for you and your ministry. Please consider that your posts and writings on this matter may not have been done with all the charity, delicacy and sensitivity needed. I humbly as you do what you can from this day to help the Church through this very difficult time. St. John Vianney, pray for us! Our Lady of Grace, pray for us! St. Michael the archangel, protect us from the enemy! God Bless you.

Daniel T July 6, 2011 at 3:04 pm

Dan:
Faculties are not granted on an event by event basis. Father needs to have been incardinated (and not just for a day) in a diocese or with SOLT. Canon 745 indicates that a member of a Society of Apostolic Life cannot live outside his community beyond a few years, and if he does he must report to the bishop of the diocese in which he resides. The diocese of Helena indicates that he has no faculties with the diocese, and he has lived outside of SOLT for well beyond a few years.

Nina July 6, 2011 at 3:16 pm

Oh, this was just waiting for someone to chalk it all up to some big gay plot…/rolleyes.
If SOLT put out a public statement claiming there were emails and texts of an inappropriate nature, I imagine they have documented those emails and texts and traced them to their sources, and verified that the sources are accurate. It’s not likely SOLT is going to put together a press release containing made up “information”, as much as the more rabid Corapians are claiming this is so.
Honestly, at some point you just throw your hands up in the air and realize you’re dealing with seriously dysfunctional people and there’s no helping them anymore. Stupid is as stupid does. Ain’t gonna be the first time in history a bunch of starry-eyed “believers” followed their guru over a cliff…or to a Kool-Aid vat…or after a comet…

Dan July 6, 2011 at 3:18 pm

Nina,
Are you taking your meds?

Nina July 6, 2011 at 3:24 pm

I’m posting from Kezar, drinking a pint of Death & Taxes. Meds? Maybe. But the fun kind. Ta, cupcake. I don’t have any use for girly men. Maybe the priesthood will take you. ;-)

Dan July 6, 2011 at 3:24 pm

Mr Akin,
I think you have a troll on your hands with “Nina”

The Sarge July 6, 2011 at 3:29 pm

Just a hater, showing it’s true colors, Dan. An opportunity to practice Charity.
(And, as St. Paul wrote, to heap red-hot coals on its head).

Dan July 6, 2011 at 3:33 pm

Fair enough Sarge.
Thank you for reminding me of my Christian duty.
God bless.

notfairtoaccuser July 6, 2011 at 3:38 pm

Respectfully, could you please take the PDF down. You can see her name very easily even though it’s blacked out!!

diane July 6, 2011 at 3:40 pm

Everyone knows her name anyway. Fr. Corapi made sure of that.

Mark July 6, 2011 at 3:53 pm

Well, I certainly don’t claim to be an expert on such matters in any way, but I must confess that I am troubled by the public statement issued by SOLT on 07/05/11, in more ways than one. I’ve seen Fr. Corapi in person twice over the years, and have been greatly edified by his teaching ministry. I’ll leave it to Our Lord to see that all of this gets properly sorted out in the end. It is hard for me to believe, however, that SOLT would issue such a public statement without any verified evidence/documentation/proof. Assuming that is true, then that gives Fr. Corapi something substantial to address if in fact that evidence does not indicate what is claimed, or is bogus. One advantage do we have in the Catholic Church is that there are multiple levels of appeal, all the way up to the Holy Father if necessary. If such allegations were brought against the pastor of a non-denominational congregation, there is no court of appeal other than a secular one. At least we do have this possibility to help get the matter reviewed by higher levels that aren’t personally involved/invested and are open to the leading of the Holy Spirit. In closing, I am mindful of Rabbi Gamaliel’s warning to the Sanhedrin in Acts 5:33-42 (esp. vv. 38-39). This warning applies to all those who are persecuting Fr. Corapi if he is innocent, but it also applies to Fr. Corapi if he is guilty and is refusing to obey his legitimate authorities in these matters. Again, I’ll wait to see how Our Lord resolves this.

Pat July 6, 2011 at 3:56 pm

Could some one of those adamantly defending Corapi please explain what motivation the SOLT would have to defame its marquee apostle and likely its greatest source of income? Why (and from whence) the $100,000 non-disclosure payment to multiple people from a priest who has taken a vow of poverty? It doesn’t add up.
I am both shocked and deeply disappointed about this, but in light of the facts, I don’t see how anyone of sound mind can be SO utterly convinced of his innocence.

RL July 6, 2011 at 4:15 pm

He can blacken further, but everyone knows it’s Tamra Sexton of Kila Mt. She’s all over the internet blabbing…word up

Simon July 6, 2011 at 4:26 pm

Astonishing that a user claims—apparently with a straight face—that posting a redacted complaint is unfair to Corapi’s would-be anonymous accuser. It’s a deeply-held belief in Anglo-American law that one has the right to face one’s accuser—that anonymous accusations are disfavored. Even St. Thomas More got to make a perjurer of his accuser. When Corapi’s accuser has the courage to attach her name to her accusations, we can talk about “fairness”! The tragedy of the situation is that whether the allegations are true or false, but particularly if they are true, the accuser and SOLT have made Corapi a victim. I don’t see any way to deny that. The ability of a person to all-but unilaterally destroy a man’s reputation (even if he’s guilty!), and to do so without having to risk an ounce of skin in the game, is repugnant. So let’s not hear about what’s fair to the accuser; what’s fair to the accuser is that she should have to make her accusations publicly. There should be no closet whence to out her. Civic life grinds to a halt when people can’t or won’t act like grown-ups and systems conspire to enable such misbehavior. She must put up or shut up, and since the damage is now done, the latter is off the table.

RL July 6, 2011 at 4:34 pm

Agreed. Especially SOLT; they not only go against their own doctrine to not speak aloud of internal affairs, but do so, and well. They threw their own “under the bus” without any form of justice, and then go duck and hide for three/four weeks. The behaviors of really all parties in this ordeal is disgusting.
God bless our holy catholic and apostolic church. The church is fine – the people are screwed up.

jkm July 6, 2011 at 4:43 pm

No, RL, you all are all over the internet blabbing her name.

Daniel T July 6, 2011 at 6:07 pm

Simon: Father knows the name as this was filed on his behalf. The question then is does the whole world have a right to know, or simply Father Corapi?

David B. July 6, 2011 at 6:14 pm

The funny thing about the suit is that it hinges on the contention that Corapi’s livelihood is dependent on his being an active Catholic Priest, speaking at Catholic events, etc., yet Corapi himself precluded any such future return by resigning from SOLT.
On one hand, he’s saying “(blank) has permanently harmed my reputation and my business cannot thrive unless I’m a priest in good standing with the Church,” while also saying (in effect) “Screw it, I’m going rogue, setting up shop on my own terms, ’cause I don’t need the blessing of the Bishop/my order for my business to thrive.” How could a Judge not take these recent actions into account?

Robert S July 6, 2011 at 8:13 pm

This whole incident has been unedifying from start to beginning.
The matter is now a scandal and makes me realise what difficult times we live in.
Yes we all agree that WE ARE ALL SINNERS and we should not judge anyone lest we not be judged falsely ourselves, but we must condemn sinful behavior and no manner of sophistry or artful spinning can detract from the obvious and painful reality of the situation.
(Father) John Corapi was seduced by his own success and started giving over to the indulgence of SELF rather than dying to SELF.
A common ailment to be sure that is not exclusive to John Corapi, for WE ARE ALL guilty of being hostage to the sins of the flesh.
But for a consecrated son of the Holy Church to indulge in such behavior…well then it is no wonder the sheep are leaving the Church disillusioned and in despair.

Robert S July 6, 2011 at 8:17 pm

My apologies the first line in my previous post should have read “from beginning to end”

Simon July 6, 2011 at 8:26 pm

Daniel, I think anonymity is a net minus, but more than that I’m in favor of symmetry. When I was growing up, a very famous actor—this was in England, so I don’t know if it made it over the pond—saw his career destroyed after he was accused of rape. In England at that time, the accuser got anonymity, but the accused did not. Acquittal didn’t save his career. That experience seared into me from a very early age as a moral lesson what I have since learned as an intellectual lesson: A system can justly reveal both names, or neither name, but it cannot justly be asymmetrical, and when a public figure is accused, full disclosure is the only possibility. In this case, then, I’d say everyone ought to be able to know who’s making the accusation because everyone knows who’s accused. And the reaction has underlined the point: It’s true that Corapi’s fans have refused to accept the possibility that “hedunnit,” but Corapi’s detractors have also seized on this like flies on raw meat. Even if Corapi is ultimately found innocent, the harm done by this anonymous accusation and SOLT’s feckless response is irreparable.

STM July 6, 2011 at 8:33 pm

Hi, Jimmy! Thanks for the interview with Al Kresta on the radio. I didn’t know there were records of Fr. C being arrested for drunk driving (& substance abuse?) 9 yrs after he was ordained. So perhaps, SOLT’s findings has factual basis. http://avemariaradio.net/archiveListen.php?file=kpm_20110705_1

Justin N July 6, 2011 at 9:57 pm

I have a strong inkling that those protesting the redistribution of free information in this fair Country of ours wouldn’t be posting the same if it was Richard McBrien who had performed or been accused of these things.
The difference? Fr. McBrien holds little sway over anything save a minority of “Catholics” who are loosing the little voice they once had. He is a nobody.
But, when you put yourself out there as a mantle of orthodoxy and the second most demanded Catholic speaker in the Country you have the opportunity to lead many (many…) astray, both before and after. More, perhaps, after as people blindly defend the indefensible.
Once you have put yourself in the position that Fr. Corapi has put himself in as a “voice for orthodox american catholics” you cross a threshold where your wrongdoing can have grave affects over devoted yet less-than-thoughtful catholics.
And it is for THESE that CA, NCR, EWTN and the like, not to mention HIS OWN ORDER(!) are putting out these bits of public information.
Throwing up litanies to multiple saints and acting flabbergasted and proclaiming some inherent “guilt” and “sin” on the part of those making known this public information does nothing to move the conversation along. Prayer is obvious. Blanketing CA, NCR, EWTN and the like with “sin bombs” is ridiculous.

Tzard July 6, 2011 at 10:09 pm

I find it odd the agreement that was entered into. It’s not typical business termination language. Forbidden to communicate with employees or agents (even Corapi’s laywers it sounds like?) to the extent that she’s given the exception to talk to her spouse? Not to be on the property for any reason *whatsoever*?
That said, the “cast a negative light” terms are vague to the point of being almost unenforceable.
It doesn’t really answer to who’s right, but it does say she left on bad terms. And $100,000? for a person with a promise of poverty, that’s a bit outrageous, but in business terms, it’s not extreme. Considering some private companies do severance packages of a year’s salary – this is not that much more, I’m guessing.
p.s. Note that this is asking for a jury trial – imagine that!

Denise July 6, 2011 at 11:24 pm

First, anyone who loves the church has to be troubled by this episode. No matter the outcome, the church will suffer yet another blow to her moral authority at a time when such authority is clearly needed. Good priests will suffer most.
Second, Father Corapi clearly knows the identity of his accuser since he brought a lawsuit against her. Mr Akin has chosen not to publish her name, but as a defendant in a law suit, her name and the allegations he makes against her are now a matter of public record.
Third, Father Corapi has largely been ignored by the secular media. As this story continues to bloom, you can expect that some pretty heavy media players will start to look into his story. If he thinks the church hierarchy were rough, wait until the overtly hostile secular media sinks its teeth into him. For them, this is a no-lose situation.

MikeM July 7, 2011 at 4:29 am

To clear up two issues:
1) Corapi did not take a vow of poverty.
2) When Corapi joined the SOLT, it was not yet under the canonical rules for a Society of Apostolic Life. I’m not sure that that fact makes any difference for him under canon law, but that is why the relevant authorities have allowed him to continue his ministry without making him accept community living. While community life may have been good for him, I see why some might have thought it unfair to impose rules on him as a member of the society ex post facto.

Kevin Tierney July 7, 2011 at 6:09 am

Funny RL, I didn’t know her name until you actually said it.
I try to avoid the salacious gossip sites and the rumor-mills that is Blacksheepdog and his FB. I just read his actual statements.
How much you wanna bet there are more like me on both “sides of the fence”?
And now you just outed her.
And MikeM, he didn’t take a “vow” of poverty, he took a “promise” of poverty. From the lay perspective, it’s a distinction without a difference. He may not have had to surrender everything in communal living, the canonical penalties for violating a “promise” might be a bit lesser than a “vow”, but he still is called as a priest to not amass such wealth and possessions.
Archbishop Sheen, by the time of his death, had donated 10 million to charity from his ministry. That’s in addition to money given to his order, other donations to local churches, etc. He had great wealth, but little to no attachment to it.
Rules change in organizations all the time. It is clear that SOLT moved slowly on this (for better or worse), yet have made clear for years they wanted him back with the community. He could still travel and preach, but they wanted him having a greater presence at the community, for his own health and spiritual wellbeing.

Yeoman July 7, 2011 at 8:05 am

I’m not inclined to comment on the underlying dispute at all, but rather I would note, as a lawyer, that what is stated in pleadings of this type (ie. complaints and answers) is lawyer drafted, and shouldn’t really be regarded as affirmations of the litigants own views or beliefs. They must have a basis truth, of course, but it’s hazardous to assume to much about them. As a litigation attorney I frequently find that the actual parties have never read them, fwiw.
I’m not saying more than that here. This whole thing is very odd indeed. Its rather that I just wince a bit when people comment from pleadings.
Also, fwiw, there’s another type of complaint called a “verified complaint” in which the litigant has signed that the allegations are true. These are rarely used, fwiw, and if they are it’s often a sign that the lawyer doesn’t want to be responsible for the allegations.

diane July 7, 2011 at 8:23 am

I disagree that this is another moral body blow to the Catholic Church, weakening her moral authority in the public’s eyes. It’s an attack on the Church from within by Father Corapi himself. The Church is Father Corapi’s victim here, just as much as his accuser is. Father flim-flammed us all. In the process, he flim-flammed the Church (of which we are part). Now the Church is dealing with it, and SOLT (at last) is dealing with it. This should not hurt the Church’s public image, IMHO. It should hurt Fr. Corapi’s public image. He’s the perp here, not the Church.
That’s the thing about very clever con-men. They’re good at conning. They’re adept at deceiving, obfuscating, evading, concealing, masking, manipulating. They dupe people. They con people. They deceive people. Including (in this case) church authorities.
SOLT may bear some blame for not reining Fr. Corapi in sooner, but I don’t see how the Church at large bears much blame. Some Church leaders and members, lacking all the information, were duped by Fr. Corapi. It happens. It happens all the time. Look at all those poor schlemiels who trusted Bernie Madoff! They (like the Church) were the victims.
I’m not saying Church leaders can do no wrong…far from it. In the sex-abuse scandal, obviously, many bishops were guilty of enabling and covering up horrific abuses. But that’s not the case here. This isn’t a cover-up; it’s just the opposite: SOLT and Bishop Mulvey are laying it on the line, clearly and unmistakably. In this case, the Church is asserting her moral authority, not vitiating it.
Please let’s keep this in perspective. Fr. Corapi: con-man. Catholic Church: duped by con-man. I know that questions remain (why didn’t people see the red flags sooner, and so forth), but, by and large, it all comes down to a very effective con by a consummate con-man.

Elodie Hogan July 7, 2011 at 8:32 am

Justin N, I think you’re the best voice of reason I’ve read thus far. These blind followers of Corapi are cause for alarm.
What all Corapi “fans” need to drill into their skulls is that it was the MESSAGE that should have attracted you, not the man. Corapi catechized me well, in spite of himself. Thus, I follow Christ and His Church, not charismatic preachers. Neither the gates of hell, nor John Corapi, shall prevail against the Church.
To rail against EWTN or the National Catholic Register for delivering the message is to miss the point. It makes you come across less of a faithful Catholic and more of a cult member. Go google the blind following (and dare I say “worship”) of Regnum Christi members with their “beloved founder.” There are a lot of painful similarities.
The message, not the man. The message, not the man. The message, not the man. Open your catechism and learn it. Open a good Church history book and learn about those truly persecuted and their APPROPRIATE (if [painful and not easy) reaction to it. St. Pio and St. John of the Cross immediately spring to mind.

Mark July 7, 2011 at 8:32 am

Diane:
Yup. But in Michael Voris’ world – Jimmy Akin is the bad guy for his “tone.”

DeeDee July 7, 2011 at 8:41 am

@ Diane – Great post, very well stated. Charismatic people sometimes fall under their own spell. The rest of us need to employ the gift of wisdom to discern the true nature of the messanger, even if/when his message is sound. Follow the Shepherd, not the sheepdog.

Dan July 7, 2011 at 8:44 am

Mark,
Michael Voris lives in the real world.

Mark July 7, 2011 at 9:03 am

The comments on this article about Corapi certainly put the medical lawsuit in a different light:
http://www.redding.com/news/2011/jul/06/priest-accused-of-improper-behavior/#comments
They assert that Corapi’s case was a scam itself – and frivolous.

fildog July 7, 2011 at 9:07 am

It is really disturbing to see that the professional Catholics seem to relish in these accusations. We are Catholics and should not be publicly condemning people in this manner–even if he is guilty. The most disturbing part of this whole thing is the vitriol that Solt, Akin, Coffin, and the rest of these suppossed Catholics have for this man. The way they throw around accusations and “dig up dirt” is better suited for TMZ or National Enquirer.

Dan July 7, 2011 at 9:17 am

It is fishy that if Fr Corapi did do all the things that he allegedly did, that he apparently did not think this would catch up with him and he would be exposed.
After all say you what you will about the priest, he has proven that he is not a stupid man.

Bill912 July 7, 2011 at 9:26 am

fildog, why do you “relish in these accusations” against “Solt, Akin, Coffin, and the rest of these suppossed Catholics”?
Your “vitriol” is “disturbing”.

diane July 7, 2011 at 9:51 am

Dan, smart people are not always wise.

jkm July 7, 2011 at 9:54 am

Dan, the fishy things he said and did not catch up with him for years and years and years. Smart does not preclude deluded by one’s own legend, on the one hand, or sociopathic on the other. And before you accuse me of practicing amateur psychology, remember that’s what you’re doing yourself when you claim he’s too smart for this.

Rolf July 7, 2011 at 11:00 am

Are we justified in calling Father Corapi “Judas” or would that be judgmental?

Dan July 7, 2011 at 12:06 pm

We still do not know for certain that Fr Corapi did the things that SOLT accused him of.
Let us wait and hear Fr’s side of the story and then wait some more before the truth is fully revealed and then do nothing but pray and sacrifice for the guilty party.

Dan July 7, 2011 at 12:11 pm

From the bishop Emeritus of the Diocese of Corpus Christi:
MY FINAL COMMENT (HOPEFULLY) ON THE CASE OF FATHER JOHN CORAPI
Posted on July 5, 2011 by abyssum
BY NOW MOST OF YOU HAVE READ THE STATEMENT ISSUED TODAY BY THE LEADERSHIP OF THE SOCIETY OF OUR LADY OF THE MOST HOLY TRINITY ON THE CASE OF FATHER JOHN CORAPI.
The statement seems to me to be nothing more or less than an effort by the SOLT leadership to ‘throw Father John Corapi under the bus.’ Maybe he deserves it, maybe he does not, I do not know. I have had no direct contact with Father Corapi in many years. But it seems to me that the issuing of the statement is an effort by the SOLT leadership to justify their own mishandling of his case from the beginning. It is a classic example of what psychologists call transference.
As I have previously pointed out, Father Corapi was not charged, as far as I can figure out, with a civil crime. Nor was he accused of sexual misconduct with a minor. Rather, his conduct which resulted in the accusatory letter sent by the woman seems to have been fostered by the lax leadership of SOLT itself. Even though he did not have a vow of poverty he was given freedom to acquire and use wealth which can in itself have a corrupting influence on anyone.
MY CHIEF COMPLAINT AGAINST BOTH THE CHANCERY OF THE DIOCESE OF CORPUS CHRISTI AND THE LEADERSHIP OF SOLT IS THAT THEY DID NOT HAVE THE GOOD OF THE CHURCH IN MIND WHEN THEY ACTED PRECIPITOUSLY TO PUBLICLY SUSPEND FATHER CORAPI.
By rushing to publicly suspend him before any investigation of the facts had been done, these Church officials totally overlooked the impact of their actions on the tens of thousands of innocent people who have been brought into a closer relationship with Our Lord, Jesus Christ, through the TEACHING of Father Corapi. He did not seem to have any other form of ministry.
Instead of rushing to publicly suspend Father Corapi these people should have quietly launched an investigation into the accusations and, if they proved to be credible, they could have quietly removed him from active exercise of his public activities and then after further investigation determined whether or not to take more drastic canonical disciplinary action against him.
INSTEAD OF RUSHING TO PUNISH HIM PUBLICLY, they should have been concerned for the welfare of the thousands and thousands people who have either been brought to the faith or have had their faith strengthened by the man who, in spite of his having clay feet, had been an effective teacher of the Gospel.
THAT WAS MY CHIEF COMPLAINT AND THAT REMAINS MY CHIEF COMPLAINT.
I doubt that I will have much, if anything, further to say about the sad case of the Diocese of Corpus Christi, The Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity and Father John Corapi.

fildog July 7, 2011 at 12:29 pm

If calling someone a “sorry man” before all the facts were out is not vitriol then I don’t know what is. Like I said, I don’t know if he is guilty or not, but I do know that you should not make public the personal sins of someone to destroy their character for the greater good. Thanks Jimmy–but I have a priest and a dad, I don’t need you to protect me from the boogey man either. Corapi denied the charges, so you know what that means? That he is presumed innocent until he gets a fair trial and is proven guilty. The bottom line is that he has not received a fair trial. For those of you not familiar with the law, a fair trial requires objective parties, right to cross-examine witnesses, etc. I see none of that here. But you might say “This is not a civil trial.” Then I would ask–Would the church be so low as to hold convictions that don’t even meet the requirements of an American civil trial? Something is wrong with this picture because the church that I belong to believes in things like justice.

Daniel T July 7, 2011 at 12:38 pm

MikeM:
Before the rules changed to make SOLT a Society of Apostolic Life, they had no canonical authority to grant him priestly faculties. They would have had to have come from a bishop (though Bishop Gracida seems to deny that they ever came through him). If Father wants to go by the old rules, it may be fine in making him a member of SOLT, but not so fine to grant him faculties. If he were following the rules, he could not have faculties due to living outside of the community for an extended period of years (canon 745). So how could he receive faculties from them by not following the rules?

Kevin Tierney July 7, 2011 at 1:54 pm

Actually fildog, it’s not detraction when releasing of the information is used to avoid a greater scandal, or is relevant to charges.
Releasing the relevant facts about the lawsuit and the findings of his superiors is quite pertinent in these matters.

Dan July 7, 2011 at 2:30 pm

.
From Father Corapi at 5:00 est about he SOLT situation
My Response Regarding Tuesday’s Press Release From SOLT.
Jul 7
Posted by The Black SheepDog
.
I am going to answer in a simple, straight forward way what seem to me the main elements of the action taken against me by the Diocese of Corpus Christi and the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity.
Regarding my personal financial situation—From the earliest days (more than twenty years ago) the Founder of the Society of Our Lady, Fr. James Flanagan, encouraged me to support myself and the Church as well. He said they could not afford to support my ministry and me personally because of the unique nature of the mission. At every step of the way, through the entire past twenty years, the Society of Our Lady’s leadership knew of my financial independence. As Fr. Flanagan encouraged, I have supported SOLT and myself from ‘day-one.‘ I have never relied on the Society for shelter, clothing, transportation, medical care, or legal counsel and instead, using my history of success in business, set up my mission as any savvy business man would, meanwhile continuing to support the Society and many other Catholic Charities.
Regarding the charge of sexual impropriety—This song of greed has been sung many times before. I have never had any promiscuous or even inappropriate relations with her. Never.
Regarding the investigation—As standard practice, my legal counsel advised me not to cooperate with the investigation until I was able to determine that the Commission’s process was fair and I had adequate rights to defend myself. Questions that certainly qualify the validity of any legal case have never been answered by the so called “fact finding team.” They refuse to reveal, and therefore utilize, any of the so-called evidence perhaps because if ‘the bad guy’ were truly revealed it may be revealed that he is really not that bad. Clearly, as my legal counsel has portrayed, the evidence supplied by the accused (of which my counsel is not permitted access to) must not have any substance.
Regarding ‘hush money’—I never paid anybody off to remain silent. On two occasions there were standard severance agreements executed with former employees and independent contractors. These agreements contained very common non-disclosure provisions. Any attorney who would not include such provisions in such agreements would rightly be guilty of negligent and actionable conduct.
Regarding my resignation—I resigned because the process used by the Church is grossly unjust, and, hence, immoral. I resigned because I had no chance from the beginning of a fair and just hearing. As I have indicated from the beginning of all this, I am not extinguished! If I were to commit to the suggestion of the Society, then I would essentially crawl under a rock and wait to die. However, I can not deny this desire to share aspects of Truth and Hope with all those willing to hear. This is what I shall continue to fight for! Many are not going to appreciate this decision, and I respect that. For those who can accept it, onward!

fildog July 7, 2011 at 2:53 pm

Kevin, I was talking about Akin not Solt. Solt is the one doing the unfair trial.

Christine July 7, 2011 at 3:41 pm

Mark,
The hospital lawsuit was not frivolous. You can read about the settlement here:
http://mathiasconsulting.com/cases/2005/11/CA/redding
Dr. Moon committed fraud on thousands of patients and was stripped of his medical license. You can read about Fr. Corapi’s involvement in the investigation and lawsuit in the book “Coronary”, which has been out for a number of years.
I’m all for hearing the truth about Fr. Corapi, but please let’s leave out the nonsense.

Leslie Ray "Les" Easley July 7, 2011 at 9:54 pm

I met Father Corapi in Tulsa, Oklahoma where there were
several people gathered to hear him speak. As he spoke,
I thought of a modern desciple not unlike Saint Paul. I
listened intently when I learned he had served in the military, but I can’t recall him making any outlandish
claims of heroism, just stating that he was drawn to the Green Beret’s way of soldiering. He was instrumental in promoting the holy rodary and I took
him litterally when he said there were real graces
associated in saying the rosary and enlisting the help
of Our Lady “who wears combat boots”. I have said all
fifteen mysteries of the rosary daily for all of the 12
years since I heard Father’s talk. I have received some
special graces as he said I would, the most significan being personal peace. I met him after his talk and only
then did I realize how short he was. He certainly was
not short or timid in his talk. I do believe that he will be exhonerated and that he will continue to preach
the gospels whether or not he does so as a priest. He is truely a messenger and like the rest of us, a sinner
who has to confess his sins and receive absolution to be able to carry on with his efforts to teach us how to
live. Who can’t forgive him? Anyone who can’t forgive
has no right to accuse. May GOD bless you, Father!

fildog July 7, 2011 at 9:56 pm

Person A gets accused of a crime by person B. The cops arrest person A based on the testimony and other evidence supplied by person B. The court does not allow person A to see the evidence against him. Person A is not allowed to face his accuser and defend the charges. Person A is not allowed to cross-examine the accuser or witnesses. People who work for the court decide to find Person A guilty based on the evidence supplied by person B. This is not just in a civil trial and it is not just in this case. Anything that is not just is against the moral law and God. I remind you that this has nothing to do with father Corapi being innocent or guilty. Due to this flawed and unfair process we may never get to the truth. This scenario is eerily similar to the mock trials that took place between the British and the American Colonists.

cheryl July 7, 2011 at 11:54 pm

If Father turns out to be innocent (even of some of the accusations) will any of us feel justified and happy for believing him to be guilty; after all he’s given to us? If he turns out to be guilty, will we be better Christians, before God, because we believed him to be guilty? Every one of us are capable of these wrongs. Fr. Corapi could be even more suseptable based on his past addictions. Money corupts so easily, even someone as great as Fr. Corapi could fall. One drink too many could lead to a lot of other sins…yet, he still claims his innocence. Are we being hasty in believing the accusations? Could he be guilty of some, but not all? I wonder what SOLT is up to making its claims, but not being available for comment for 18 days. I just wonder how this will end. My son is applying to the seminary to discern his vocation….talk of girly men is strange to me: my son is very brave and courageous, he knows how to shoot a gun, is quite an athlete, and must be quite a real man to even consider the priesthood despite all that our Church has endured over the last few years. Watch how quickly we believe the evil. Fr. Corapi is still a son of Mary.

Patt July 8, 2011 at 6:48 am

I don’t know about the rest of the accusations against him, I assume if they are wrong he can sue for libel. I am accusing him of being a sharp, money making businessman. I felt that way long before this came to a head. It was those emails he sent me selling his over priced products that got on my nerves–LONG AGO.

fildog July 8, 2011 at 7:58 am

Being a sharp, money making businessman is not a sin the last time I checked. You should compare how much money you gave to Catholic charities with Corapi. Without making a profit there is no way to get the material out on a large scale. It is way more effective than donations–especially for evangelization. Don’t buy the communist premise that making money is a sin.

Bill912 July 8, 2011 at 8:13 am

“You should compare how much money you gave to Catholic charities with Corapi.”
Actually, you shouldn’t. The amount someone else gives is irrelevant. What matters is the amount you give in relation to your means. And that is between you and God. Comparing your donations to that of others can lead to Pride (“See! I’m better than he because I gave more!). Remember the Widow’s Mite.

fildog July 8, 2011 at 9:55 am

I was not comparing mine with yours, I was making the point that money can be used for good. You implied that it is evil to make money. Every time EWTN, or any other Catholic entity tries to solicit donations, where do you think the money comes from? It does not magically grow on trees,it has to come from a business profit.

fildog July 8, 2011 at 1:39 pm

If anyone on this board were accused of a crime would they agree with the process that SOLT is using? Would you agree to give up your right to see the evidence against you, cross-examine the witnesses? I’ll be counting how many on this board raise their hands. And if you do agree with the SOLT process then there are some third-world countries I recommend you visit.

Caroline July 8, 2011 at 9:10 pm

I think Bishop Rene Gracida said it best, “Thrown under a bus.” Sounds like that to me. I am so disappointed in Catholic radio. I expected charity from journalists. He should be considered not guilty until evidence proves otherwise. Jimmy said this was done to unite Catholics. Since when have we been united? AmChurch Catholics, Pius X Catholics, Conservative Catholics, Feminist Catholics, Socialist Catholics, Old Catholics, New Catholics, ad infinitum.

fildog July 8, 2011 at 10:14 pm

What Akin did was dig up dirt and slander an already tired person. This is what the secular media does. This situation has exposed Catholic radio and EWTN. They both still do a lot of good when they talk about Jesus but this was a secular media like attack.

Bill912 July 9, 2011 at 3:31 am

And your evidence of “slander”–that Jimmy is deliberately reporting what he knows to be untrue, with the intent to harm Father Corapi’s reputation–is what, exactly?

Gloria July 9, 2011 at 8:42 am

I first noticed the phenomenon of what I call “hysterical charity” in the case of Fr. Maciel and the Leginaries of Christ. There was a contingent of Maciel defenders who considered any and all accusations against him (and then, later, any and all sanctions and condemnations against him) as coming straight from the devil. As it happens, Maciel turned out to be a likely sociopath, and a certified conman and predator.
Whether or not John Corapi is guilty of the charges leveled against him, let’s keep in mind that purity of intention is not the same as infallibility of judgment.
If we assume that SOLT is acting with purity of intention and due diligence in fact finding to the best of their ability (which I, for one, have zero reason to assume they are not) then that itself is sufficient reason for them to act as they have seen fit.
If, three months down the road, a great conspiracy were to be unearthed, in which a group of (non-SOLT) persons had purposefully forged emails, etc., to bring Corapi down, and he were, in fact, to be shown to be completely innocent–that would not in any way taint or devalue the actions SOLT has taken. I use this highly unlikely scenario as an example to show that SOLT has every right to act in the best interest of Corapi’s own soul, their order, and for the good of the Church, as they see fit in this particular moment in time, with the particular knowledge they currently have, or think they have.
I can envision a hypothetical scenario, such as a grand conspiracy against Corapi, which, when it came to light, his defenders would scream at SOLT, “SEE! You ARE guilty of rash judgment,” etc.
Well, no, they wouldn’t necessarily be, even in that instance.
They have every right (and, indeed, are obliged) to act according to their best judgment, in conjunction with the highest purity of intention they can muster. That’s it. They aren’t infallible. They likely don’t have every fact of the matter to analyze (though it sounds like they have quite a bit).
In fact, it would be a lack of virtue in this instance for them not to act publicly, knowing what they think they know.
Hysterical charity, an attitude in which Catholics try to muzzle each other under the flawed expectation that no one ever “judge” another, and subsequently attack those they see as not falling in line with their own expectations of what “charity” entails, is highly detrimental to the Church. It is rooted in pride.

fildog July 9, 2011 at 6:38 pm

Would you agree to go through the SOLT process if you were accused? I doubt it. You would be the first to want to the see the evidence and cross-examine witnesses. I’m glad you brought up Father Maciel. Should those molested by him have been obedient to the vow of silence? Of course not, the moral law and truth trump obedience.

Terry July 9, 2011 at 7:27 pm

How much money did Corapi actually give or has given to Catholic charities in recent years, either in dollar amount or in relationship with his income since we are on the subject of “solicitations” and “donations”. Has this info ever been released by his media company? made public? recorded? What do we really know?

Caroline July 9, 2011 at 9:22 pm

Amen, Gloria. Amen.

fildog July 9, 2011 at 9:44 pm

St. Thomas Aquinas on whether superiors are to be obeyed in all things: “On the contrary, It is written (Acts 5:29): “We ought to obey God rather than men.” Now sometimes the things commanded by a superior are against God. Therefore superiors are not to be obeyed in all things.” Summa Theologiae II-II Q104

cheryl July 9, 2011 at 11:24 pm

Scott P. Richardt does a decent job analysing and dissecting Fr. Corapi’s response to the SOLT announcement.I know nothing of Richardt, but he makes some valid points. First of all, Father never denies having inappropriate relationships with anyone other than the accuser. Secondly, Father discusses his wealth as basically being indepent, self-supporting. His wealth appears to go way beyond that concept. Sadly, Father’s special announcement only seems to be incriminating and that he is guilty–maybe of every accusation.
The man is great at making millions, and millions have been consistent at destroying him. I have had concern about him living so far away from his order. None of us can make it alone, and a priest out “on his own”, scarey!! The devil does exist, and if Fr. Corapi isn’t a target, none of us have to worry about anything.
I pray that he will admit his guilt, whatever it may be, repent, return to his order, and live out his days performing acts of pennance quietly away from the corruption that seems to follow him everywhere he goes. I have really benefitted from everyone’s input. For the most part, everyone has acted charitably. This larger problem still remains: our Bishop’s responses to these accusations. For years this has gone on seemingly imbalanced, for lack of a better word. What if they had done the investigation quietly and thoroughly, got all the facts straight first. Then many of us wouldn’t have had to feel the need to defend Father Corapi. Then, Father Corapi wouldn’t had been able to sue the accuser, which is tying up the investigation. The whole zero tolerance policy, etc…, is out of whack and opens the Church up to a lot of “gold diggers” and others with less than good intentions and then makes every accuser appear to have ulterior motives. Therefore, the faithful suspect everyone, trust no-one, but, hopefully, God. Our American Bishops, on the whole, just plain make me nervous; discounting the strong, faithful ones like Archbishop Chaput, Bishop Bruschowitz, Bishop Vasa, and others like them. May God continue to sanctify His Church.

Bill912 July 10, 2011 at 3:57 am

Still waiting to see evidence that Jimmy is guilty of slander, that he deliberately reported what he knew to be untrue, with the intention of damaging Father Corapi’s reputation. But perhaps Jimmy’s accuser is being obedient to his own vow of silence.

fildog July 10, 2011 at 7:46 am

That was a mistatement on my part. I apologize to Akin for that. I should have said he might be guilty of rash judgment according to Catechism section 2477.

Gloria July 10, 2011 at 9:06 am

“Would you agree to go through the SOLT process if you were accused? I doubt it. You would be the first to want to the see the evidence and cross-examine witnesses. I’m glad you brought up Father Maciel. Should those molested by him have been obedient to the vow of silence? Of course not, the moral law and truth trump obedience.”
Fildog. You are pretty good at baiting and switching. Who would not want to see the evidence and talk to the witnesses (if he or she were indeed innocent)? Who would not want to do the same if he or she were not innocent?
I clearly wasn’t talking about Corapi’s understandable interest (and vested interested) in knowing what the charges are.
I clearly WAS talking about SOLT’s actions and what we can, in true charity, discern about them. I apply that same logic to Jimmy, Al Kresta, et al.
The refusal to consider that anyone but Corapi is acting with good intentions in this situation is immature and silly. Grossly immature, in fact.

Mark July 10, 2011 at 9:57 am

Yes, It may be sad, BUT, we have to realize that satan is much alive as our LORD!…we are human….and we WILL FALL…and the love for Fr Corapi still must endure in prayer. Life goes on for us all!! this is just a SIGN for us to recognize our WEAKNESSES!…and a call to pray ALL THE MORE for the CHURCH! Remeber..”THE BATTLE AGAINST THE DEVIL, WHICH IS THE PRINCIPAL TASK OF SAINT MICHEAL THE ARCHANGEL, IS STILL BEING FOUGHT TODAY, BECAUSE THE DEVIL IS STILL ALIVE AND ACTIVE IN THE WORLD!.”
Pope John Paul II

fildog July 10, 2011 at 10:30 pm

Solt said that they could not complete the investigation because Corapi was delaying it. Solt said they would not continue the investigation because Corapi resigned. Solt comes up with a conviction. You don’t find anything inconsistant here?

The Masked Chicken July 11, 2011 at 7:38 am

I have said nothing throughout this entire affair and I will continue to do so. I am neither in a command path nor a direct damage path. The only thing I can do, in Christian charity, is to pray that God’s merciful will is done. I can also try, with ever-increasing strength, to reform my own life. Massive messes like these, wherever the fault lies, can only flourish in an environment of moral laxity. My contribution to helping the situation lies not in making comments on a blog, but in reforming my own conduct. I would go so far as to say that if one is not praying at least thirty minutes a day or doing a complete fifteen decade rosary for this affair and to grow in Christian maturity, then one ought not be commenting at all on the matter. If one does the good that lies before them, the rest will take care of itself. Prayer, fasting, and almsgiving are our weapons – and for the most part, they can be done in silence. From silence I came and to silence I return on this subject.

Dan July 11, 2011 at 8:28 am

Chicken,
Words of wisdom and Truth!

Art July 11, 2011 at 8:36 am

The information that has been provided thus far seems to be pointing all the fingers in Corapi’s direction.
I like to give people the benefit of the doubt.
A wise man once told me that “every action has a reaction” and the “reaction” often times is more powerful than the “action”.
Corapi’s reaction appears to me that there was no prayer involved, but that of a business man looking to maximize his profits. The law of supply and demand were involved. (Less followers equals got to clear the shelves while we can, that way there is no loss in profit)
Initially everything half off on his website. Now a clearance sale?!
His guilt or innocence is not what I am judging him by, but his reaction to the situation is very problematic. Thus making him appear to be guilty.
Continue to pray for your priests.

Deb July 22, 2011 at 4:53 am

Has the suit been dropped? I’m not that tech savvy but know how to look up civil cases in my neck of the woods. I didn’t see this case when I checked their court records, but maybe I did something wrong?

John Glad August 10, 2011 at 3:13 pm

The “non-disclosure agreement” portrayed as something sinister is actually a standard clause in these kinds of agreements. To view it as some kind of admission that there’s something to be disclosed is preposterous. If I had to guess, I’d say Corapi had been unchaste with a woman, something no Catholic would defend, but there’s a qualitative difference between lapsing into normal sexual congress and sexually abusing children or — as is too often the case with priests — engaging in homosexual conduct. It’s become banal to observe that the Church will spend billions of the faithful’s money to silence victims of predatory, perverted priests, but the priesthood and episcopacy do not hesitate at all when a priest acts upon normal heterosexual urges. Also, it’s more than a bit creepy that the priest from SOLT who commented on Corapi tossed off the term “sexting” in some statement the weirdo published on the SOLT website. Reminds me of the old saw that when a priest shows up to the parish picnic with his girlfriend, at least you know the kids are safe.

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