Clergy Sex Abuse Crisis Response

On Friday, February 15, 2019, the Diocese of Brooklyn released a list of clergy credibly accused of sexual abuse of a minor.

See the list here.

Press Release:

Video Statement (English):

Video Statement (Spanish):

Bishop DiMarzio reports the results of the Spring Bishop’s meeting.

Bishop DiMarzio’s column from March of 2019: Pope’s Plan to Protect Children of the World

In February of 2019, Bishop DiMarzio wrote, “one of my most important responsibilities has been, and continues to be, addressing the pain caused by the sexual abuse of minors by members of the clergy in Brooklyn and Queens.”

21 Points for Reflection Discussed at Clerical Sex Abuse Summit at the Vatican in February 2019
Vatican Press Release:

The Diocese of Brooklyn has been working to ensure parishioners are fully informed of the sex abuse crisis from its historical beginning to what is going on now.

Here is a look at what the Diocese of Brooklyn does to protect children and help survivors.

Regional Meetings

On four dates between October 17 and November 8, 2018, Bishop DiMarzio held Regional Meetings with the Lay Faithful of the Diocese in Brooklyn and Queens where parish leaders were able to ask him any questions they had about the clergy sex abuse crisis. Watch a video from the four meetings here:


Excerpts from the regional meetings:




Changes We’ve Made

Since 1995 and again in 2002, bishops of the United States have been putting policies and procedures into place to address clergy sex abuse in the church. Those policies are outlined in the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People (the “Dallas Charter”). While even one case is too many, given the evidence of so few cases in the last 16 years, these policies have proven effective.

Independent reporting line to authorities. Bishop DiMarzio established a toll-free reporting line (888) 634-4499 in 2003 for anyone to report sexual abuse by diocesan personnel. Reports are directly sent to law enforcement authorities. There is no diocesan involvement, to ensure compliance.

The Catholic Bishop Abuse Reporting Service was launched in March 2020, to receive reports of sexual abuse and related misconduct by bishops and to relay those reports to proper Church authorities for investigation. Where a report includes a crime, such as the sexual abuse of a minor, it will also be reported to civil authorities. Otherwise, reports will be kept confidential. (800) 276-1562

Zero tolerance. Any credible accusation of sexual abuse of a minor against diocesan personnel results in permanent removal from ministry and/or employment.

Safe environment programs. The Dallas Charter mandates sex abuse awareness training for children and adults, signing the code of conduct, and conducting criminal background screenings. Priests, deacons, pastoral ministers, employees and volunteers are trained in recognizing signs of sexual abuse in children, the methods and means that offenders use, and steps to prevent abuse.

View our Policy and Procedures Regarding the Sexual Abuse of Minors by Priests or Deacons:


A Safe Environment



Office of Victim Assistance. Under the Dallas Charter, the Diocese of Brooklyn has established an Office of Victim Assistance. The office works to bring about a sense of hope and healing. We want victims to be able to become not just survivors, but thrivers. Our goal is to offer any and all assistance to help victims move through these stages.

The only acceptable number of sex abuse cases is ZERO. While the abuse crisis is fundamentally a historical problem in our past, we will never become complacent when it comes to the protection of children and adults in our diocese.

Ongoing Communications

Bishop DiMarzio has published a report entitled From Shadow to Light, and regularly addresses the sex abuse crisis in his weekly column in The Tablet, “Put Out Into the Deep.”

The Press Office of the Diocese of Brooklyn also continues to communicate the latest information on the sex abuse crisis to the media.

On September 24, 2018, Bishop DiMarzio released a letter to parishioners, addressing the New York State Attorney General subpoena to all NYS Catholic dioceses.

On August 14, 2019, the Diocese of Brooklyn posted the following information to help the faithful better understand the Child Victims Act (CVA) and some of the things the Diocese has done around this issue.

The Diocese of Brooklyn issued a press release on the CVA:

  • Press Release (English) here.
  • Press Release (Spanish) here.

Bishop DiMarzio video statement on the CVA:

  • Watch in English here.
  • Watch with Spanish subtitles here.

Frequently Asked Questions on the CVA:

  • FAQ sheet (English) here.
  • FAQ sheet (Spanish) here.

For press inquiries, contact Adriana Rodriguez, Press Secretary, at (718) 517-3143.