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SANCHEZ DEPOSITION

Part 4A

Previous: Sanchez Deposition Part 3C

Next: Sanchez Deposition Part 4B


1, Page 552-14, Page 559 (DELETED-repeat of legal
info)
1 MR. GOFFE: This is the continuance of the
2 testimony of Archbishop Sanchez. In case numbers that
3 will be listed at the conclusion of this deposition, from
4 January 14th, 1994. Today is January 15th, 1994. The
5 time is 9:19 AM. We are on the record.
6 MR. PASTERNACK: Good morning, Archbishop.
7 THE WITNESS: Good morning.
8 MR. PASTERNACK: I'm not going to be asking
9 the questions today. Mr. Bennett will continue with that.
10 But I did want to just talk about, for the record, what
11 our concern is about the time problem, just state our
12 position, so there will be no question about it having
13 been made on the record.
14 I believe that the Plaintiffs that I represent
15 will have at least another day -- excuse me, half a day,
16 at least, of questioning for the Archbishop. Mr. Bennett
17 tells me that he will have this full day, and Mr. Konrad
18 tells me that he will probably have a full day.
19 MR. KONRAD: May have a day.
20 MR. PASTERNACK: May have a day. And Mr.
21 Tinkler will want to take some time, too. I believe that
22 I could have completed what I wanted to do by today,
but
23 for the difficulties in starting the deposition on the
24 first day, where I believe the record will reflect we
25 didn't get going until sometime after 11:00 because of
an
Page 560
1 unexpected hearing that Judge Ashby summoned us to
and
2 then because of the various machinations that were
3 required in getting here.
4 Otherwise, it appears the deposition has
5 relatively smoothly. I'm sure that nobody is delaying.
6 I'm sure we all want to finish this as quickly as we can.
7 But it's going to be our position, when Mr. Bennett
8 concludes with his questioning today and whatever Mr.
9 Tinkler does, that the deposition is not ended but rather
10 will be recessed until it can be continued.
11 I'm willing to continue tonight, if that
12 accommodates the Archbishop and counsel. I'm willing
to
13 continue tomorrow, if that accommodates the
Archbishop,
14 although I suspect there may be a religious objection to
15 so doing. And I'm willing to continue on Monday, if that
16 accommodates the Archbishop's schedule, or at any
time in
17 the reasonably near future that's convenient for all
18 counsel.
19 So that's going to be our position, and if
20 anybody wants to agree with that, they can. Otherwise
21 we'll just take it up with the judge. Thanks.
22 MR. BENNETT: And that accurately states
23 the position for the Plaintiffs that I represent.
24-25 (DELETEDd)
Page 561
1 EXAMINATION (Continued)
2 BY MR. BENNETT:
3 Q. Good morning, Archbishop.
4 A. Good morning, Mr. Bennett.
5-7 (DELETED)
8 Q. Archbishop, where are the parish files kept?
9 A. At the office of the chancery.
10 Q. And that is a file that is separate and apart
11 from the priest personnel file?
12 A. They are simply filed differently. One is
13 titled "Parish Files." The other is titled "Personal
14 Files."
15 Q. Is there any policy, or has there been any
16 policy, in effect to determine what documents enter
which
17 file?
18 A. No, sir. There's no written policy. It just
19 stands to reason things that pertain to parish business go
20 into a parish file, and anything that may be of a personal
21 nature, just pertaining to the priest himself, would go
22 into the priest file.
23 Q. You say there's no written policy?
24 A. No, sir.
25 Q. Is there a written policy on maintaining of
Page 562
1 files in any respect?
2 A. Not while I was there, sir, no, sir.
3 Q. Do you have any knowledge of whether or not
4 there was a written policy under Archbishop Davis?
5 A. I don't know of anything, any policy that
6 existed under Archbishop Davis. I can't speak for him
7 obviously, but none comes to my attention at all.
8 Q. Is there now, to your knowledge, a written
9 personnel policy for the regulation of priests?
10 A. A personnel policy?
11 Q. Correct.
12 A. Not for regulation of priests, but an effort was
13 made to gather some general guidelines to sort of guide
14 the personnel board in references to the priests, so that
15 whatever priest concerns existed, they would try to
16 address them. To the best of my knowledge, that
personnel
17 policy, if you want to call it, was never fully confirmed
18 as a policy. It was an effort to establish such.
19 Q. When was that effort undertaken?
20 A. It's been quite a few years. That might even be
21 10 years old, eight years old. I am not certain.
22 Q. So 1986?
23 A. Perhaps. I just don't recall it.
24 Q. Within a range of time?
25 A. In the '80s.
Page 563
1 Q. Mid '80s?
2 A. Possibly.
3 MS. KENNEDY: Object, asked and answered.
4 He's already indicated to Mr. Bennett he doesn't know the
5 time.
6 Q. (By Mr. Bennett) Archbishop, were there any
7 written documents reflecting that effort to come up with
8 personnel guidelines for priests in the mid '80s or the
9 '80s?
10 A. There was a written document that had been
11 brought together. Much of it just reflects the Code of
12 Canon Law, because much of the law of the Church
13 pertaining to priests is found in the Code of Canon Law.
14 So it was simply extracted from the code and included
in
15 the document for the Archidocese, and then tried to
16 localize the information in that document stating the
17 number of parishes and what information we had about
them
18 and the personnel board, how it was formed, and the
19 priests themselves, how they have a right to a vacation,
20 and they have a right to so many weekends off from the
21 parish per year, things of this nature.
22 Q. Why was that document never ratified or adopted?
23 A. Just like many things, you make a supreme
24 effort, but it just wasn't reviewed a second time at
25 another point and finally ratified and promulgated. It
Page 564
1 had been given to priests for their review, asking for
2 their input after three years, over a three-year period,
3 to get information from them so that eventually a final
4 document could be settled, but that was never done.
5 Q. Why not?
6 A. It simply wasn't done. Many things in our life,
7 we don't get done. We want to fix the refrigerator for
8 two years, and we don't do it. Some things just fall
9 through the cracks.
10 Q. And where is that document now?
11 A. I would suppose a copy of it is at the chancery
12 office in the Archidocese.
13 Q. Do you know under what file that would appear?
14 A. I think you would have to ask the chancellor if
15 they could procure a copy for you. It's been a few years,
16 like I say, since it was distributed, and I would assume
17 that the chancellor has a copy perhaps in his list of
18 books or files.
19 Q. Did you direct that effort, that that effort be
20 undertaken?
21 A. The effort was directed by the personnel board.
22 It was a self-initiated effort by the personnel board of
23 the Archidocese to accumulate information that might
serve
24 as a personnel file or personnel policy.
25 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: One moment, Mr. Tinkler.
Page 565
1 MR. BENNETT: My name is Mr. Bennett.
2 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Oh, that's right.
3 Q. (By Mr. Bennett) So that undertaking was not
4 initiated by you as Archbishop?
5 A. No. It wasn't a formal mandate from myself. It
6 was something that we all felt we would need, and we
7 should make an effort to put together.
8 Q. Why did you feel that you might need it?
9 A. I think that unless you have some policy in
10 front of you, you're reinventing policy every few years.
11 And so it would be good to have some directives that
would
12 be clear to the priests, so that they would know, in fact,
13 what their salary is and its base, their salary schedule,
14 what benefits they may receive, what vacation time is
15 theirs, just those very nitty-gritty type of policies that
16 pertain to the administration.
17 Most were familiar, but we felt it would be good to
18 put them all down in a single booklet or a policy.
19 Q. Is consistent application another reason for
20 having such a written policy?
21 A. I think that's one of many reasons for having a
22 written policy, besides remembering what the policy has
23 been, bringing it to the attention of newly ordained
24 priests and other variable reasons.
25 Q. Was there any written personnel policy in the
Page 566
1 Archidocese, to your knowledge, prior -- or at any time
2 prior to that, prior to that effort that was undertaken by
3 the personnel board in the '80s?
4 A. No, Mr. Bennett, there was no prior written
5 personnel policy, to the best of my recollection.
6 Q. And when you became Archbishop in 1974, did you
7 know whether or not there was ever such a policy, written
8 policy, under Archbishop Davis?
9 A. I was unaware of any written policy under
10 Archbishop Davis, and I suspected that there never had
11 been any form of written policy for personnel alone,
12 simply because personnel boards, as such, had never
been
13 part and parcel of the Church's structure until after the
14 Second Vatican council addressed that.
15 Q. Who was chancellor when you became Archbishop?
16 A. Father Lucien Hendren.
17 Q. And was he chancellor under Archbishop Davis?
18 A. For a brief period of time, yes.
19 Q. How long is "brief"?
20 A. I don't know. I do not believe he was
21 chancellor during the full tenure of Archbishop Davis.
22 Q. Do you know if he had been chancellor for more
23 than a year prior to your becoming Archbishop?
24 A. Yes, I believe he was.
25 Q. After you became Archbishop, did you consult
Page 567
1 with Chancellor Hendren concerning the policies and
2 procedures of the Archidocese?
3 A. Concerning --
4 Q. Anything.
5 A. We didn't consult one another. I did not
6 consult with him to sit down and say, "Let's review what
7 all the policies and procedures are." I needed to ask
8 from him advice regarding one or another issue,
especially
9 in reference to canon law, since he was a canonist, and I
10 was new in the administrative position. So I needed to
11 confer with him regarding separate issues from time to
12 time.
13 Q. Why didn't you review with him all the policies
14 and procedures of the Archidocese when you became
15 Archbishop?
16 A. Simply didn't occur to me to sit down and say,
17 "Let's review policies and procedures." As I have
already
18 mentioned, there were no written policies for
19 administration within the Archidocese. Once again, the
20 Code of Canon Law provides the broad guidelines for
the
21 administration of Church and Church materials,
22 celebrations, liturgical celebrations, reference with
23 communities, administration of sacraments. Most of the
24 activity of Church is covered in the Code of Canon Law.
25 Q. But the administration activities, the
Page 568
1 day-to-day administration activities of the Archidocese is
2 not a part of canon law, is it?
3 A. Such as?
4 Q. Such as personnel matters relating to priests.
5 A. Code of Canon Law includes references to the
6 activity of priests, the assignment of priests. That's
7 included in the Code of Canon Law to many different
8 degrees and different ways. It talks about faculties for
9 priests to be able to perform marriages, to administer the
10 sacrament of baptism. It talks about the assignment of
11 pastors, the positions of associate pastors. So it does
12 address personnel in many fashions.
13 Q. Does it address how the backgrounds of priests
14 are to be investigated prior to their assignments?
15 A. It doesn't deal with that in detail, but it
16 presumes that the priest who is going to be ordained and
17 granted faculties is one who is in good standing with the
18 Church.
19 Q. And in order to assure that that presumption is
20 intact, it's the responsibility of the particular
21 archidocese to conduct an investigation of that priest's
22 background?
23 A. To acquire the information that they need to
24 make a proper decision.
25 Q. And with respect to those policies, did you
Page 569
1 consult -- or why didn't you consult with Chancellor
2 Hendren after you became Archbishop to update yourself
on
3 what those policies were?
4 A. The policy to which you're referring was one
5 that is -- was known to him and to myself and to others,
6 that if a priest who comes into the Archidocese and
7 requests faculties, that there must be a contact with his
8 own superior before any faculties are to be granted.
9 There was contact with him.
10 I think you're stating that I had no contact with
11 him, and I am saying that I had contact with him on a
12 daily basis. But I'm not saying that we sat down in a
13 pre-planned program to investigate all of the policies of
14 the Archidocese.
15 Q. So you didn't have any specific meeting with
16 Chancellor Hendren to discuss the policies --
17 A. Just policies, no.
18 Q. -- of the Archidocese with respect to the
19 investigation of the background of priests?
20 MS. KENNEDY: Object, asked and answered.
21 A. Sir, his office was close to mine and just
22 required a few steps to be able to consult with him and
he
23 with me regarding any issue.
24 Q. Does the Archidocese maintain telephone records?
25 A. I'm not certain. You mean memos from telephone
Page 570
1 conversations?
2 Q. What I'm talking about are billings from the
3 telephone company for telephone calls made by the
4 Archidocese.
5 A. I really don't know, sir. That belongs to the
6 department of the finance. I'm sure they keep financial
7 records, but I don't know if they're going to keep them
8 for more than whatever is normally required or advised,
9 seven years or so possibly. But to try to keep
10 everything, goodness, we would need a warehouse to
store
11 information that way. So I'm not saying that there are
12 none, but I'm not saying that we have kept everything.
13 Q. Do you have any policy in that regard?
14 A. No, sir.
15 Q. You have no policy with regard to the length of
16 time you would keep telephone records?
17 A. No, sir.
18 Q. You mentioned seven years. Is that --
19 A. I mention seven years because that comes to my
20 mind regarding the IRS. I think they require individuals
21 to keep their own personal records of income tax and
etc.,
22 over a seven-year period; and beyond that, you're not
23 obliged to do so. So I just -- it just seems to be that
24 maybe there's a similar law that exists for corporate
25 businesses.
Page 571
1 Q. Has the Archidocese kept records of the 800
2 number calls from the 800 number that was instituted to
be
3 available to the public to report sexual abuse by priests?
4 A. I really don't know if that has been kept. That
5 belonged to Chancellor Wolf.
6 Q. So Chancellor Wolf would have records of that,
7 if any?
8 A. He would be the person to ask whether or not
9 records were kept or not kept.
10 Q. Is there any policy established with respect to
11 those types of records?
12 A. No, sir. I did not establish any policy in
13 reference to that. Perhaps he did.
14 Q. Did you authorize him to establish such policy?
15 A. No, sir, he initiated that totally
16 independently.
17 Q. You indicated that you were on the personnel
18 board at some period of time prior to becoming
Archbishop?
19 A. Yes, sir.
20 Q. Could you please tell me again what period of
21 time that was?
22 A. It could have been anywhere -- probably either
23 '70 -- more than likely 1972, I believe it was. It could
24 have been '71 or '72, but I believe it was 1972.
25 Q. For how long did you serve?
Page 572
1 A. I believe I served for a one-year period, at
2 least that's what's in my mind at this time, because I
3 came to Albuquerque in 1971, in September. So I don't
4 know if I -- I can't recall. I may have been on the board
5 at that time already. Maybe it was a two-year period.
6 But it would be one, possibly two years.
7 Q. Were you serving on the personnel board at the
8 time you became Archbishop?
9 A. No, sir.
10 Q. Do you know how long prior to that you
11 discontinued service on the personnel board?
12 A. Well, I was named Archbishop in 1974. I may
13 have discontinued in '73 or '72.
14 Q. Did the personnel board, while you were on it,
15 handle any requests from priests outside of the
16 Archidocese for incardination within the Archidocese?
17 A. You mean applications for consideration?
18 Q. Correct.
19 A. I just don't have a recollection, an immediate
20 recollection, of any individual in particular. That does
21 not mean that there may not have been a request. I just
22 don't recall, sir, whether anyone wrote -- they would not
23 write to the personnel board for that consideration. They
24 would have written to the Archbishop for that
25 consideration. And he and his chancellor would have
done
Page 573
1 whatever they needed to do.
2 You see, incardination does not come about simply
3 because of request. There is normally a testing period in
4 which the individual must serve, with the permission of
5 the archbishop, with proper documents, but he must first
6 serve for approximately three years. I would require a
7 three-year period of service before any consideration for
8 incardination would occur. Because incardination is not
9 only asking the -- or allowing the priest to minister to
10 people, but he has to be able to share himself with his
11 brother priests. He has to get along. It's a team. And
12 if someone wanted to simply come here and serve and
just
13 isolate himself from everyone else, or if he didn't get
14 along with the other clergy, then I would not have
wanted
15 to incardinate him, nor would the priests have voted for
16 his incardination. The personnel board would not have
17 voted for that.
18 So the man has to prove himself, you know, after --
19 in fact, during that three-year period, he himself may
20 feel and reach a decision that this really isn't the area
21 that he would like to continue to work for the future and
22 would simply leave.
23 Q. So an application for incardination by a priest
24 from outside of the Archidocese of Santa Fe would have
25 been a matter that would have been referred to the
Page 574
1 personnel board for evaluation and, as you said, a vote?
2 A. Only after he had served in the diocese for
3 about a three-year period. The application would have
4 belonged to the archbishop, perhaps to his chancellor, for
5 any initial acceptance of that priest into the Archidocese
6 for -- to give him the opportunity for service with an eye
7 toward incardination.
8 Q. So my question is, would -- I assume from what
9 you've said, then, that an application for incardination
10 would ultimately be referred to the personnel board for
11 evaluation and a vote?
12 A. That was my policy when I came in as the
13 Archbishop. I felt that a personnel vote was important
14 for me, because I needed to know how the priests felt
15 about any priest who was petitioning for incardination.
16 Q. And was that the policy in effect when you
17 served on the personnel board prior to becoming
18 Archbishop?
19 A. Not in every instance. I am told -- when I
20 served, I think it was. I think we were consulted. But I
21 know that in other instances, Archbishop Davis would
make
22 decisions himself, and possibly because there was no
23 personnel board at that time. Like I say, it did not
24 always exist.
25 Q. But it existed from the time you served on it?
Page 575
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Until you became Archbishop?
3 A. Yes.
4 [The witness conferred with his attorney.]
5 Q. Archbishop, when a priest comes into the
6 Archidocese of Santa Fe from another Archidocese and
wants
7 to serve in a parish either on a weekend supply ministry
8 or on any other temporary assignment, does he have to be
9 granted faculties to do that?
10 A. Before any priest serves in the Archidocese of
11 Santa Fe in a public manner, yes, he would need the
12 faculties of the Archidocese to do so.
13 Q. And how does he acquire those faculties?
14 A. Request is normally made to the chancery office,
15 received either by the chancellor or directly by the
16 archbishop. Most of the time, it's by the chancellor.
17 Q. And then what does the chancellor do with that
18 request?
19 A. The chancellor would speak with the priest, or
20 if it was by letter, he would then reply that he would
21 kindly have his local bishop or chancellor write on his
22 behalf, so that we might know of his good standing in
his
23 own diocese.
24 Q. And is it that point when the contact would be
25 made with his archidocese of origin?
Page 576
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And these requests have to be approved by whom,
3 or faculties have to be granted by whom or what
4 authorizing body?
5 A. The archbishop is the one who has the authority
6 to grant the faculty, but I delegate, or a bishop may
7 delegate, that authority to his chancellor in order to
8 facilitate things, because oftentimes the archbishop is
9 away from the office, out of the town, out of country.
10 And so another person who is, in a sense, replacing him
11 has that authority to act, so that there's not an
12 extraordinary delay.
13 Q. Would the person to whom such authority was
14 delegated be anyone outside of the chancery office?
15 A. Could be the vicar general, the vicar general of
16 the archidocese who does not have an office, did not
have
17 an office under me in the chancery. He was a pastor in a
18 parish. He would have that authority.
19 Q. Could it be any priest other than a vicar
20 general?
21 A. No ordinary priest, no. In fact, my advice to
22 priests in the Archidocese, whenever a visiting priest
23 came into their parish who had come, say, to visit their
24 father or their mother and were going to stay for a few
25 days on vacation and wanted permission to celebrate
Holy
Page 577
1 Mass each day that they were there, that they should at
2 least advise us. If they did not know the priest, then we
3 would be obliged to call their bishop.
4 If he was a priest who was already known to us
5 because he had visited on other occasions, then we
6 wouldn't have to make that call. But ordinarily, if the
7 man was unknown, the priest pastor would call us and say
8 that, "Father So and So is visiting parents, would like
9 permission to celebrate the Eucharist," and we would
place
10 a call to his diocese of origin saying, "May we have that
11 permission?"
12 Frequently priests who are visiting like that do
13 bring a little letter or a little card that is already
14 printed and merely needs a signature of the bishop to
15 indicate that they are indeed a priest in good standing
16 and that they may -- it requests that whoever would
honor
17 his request to celebrate the Eucharist.
18 Q. But you would make an initial inquiry; if they
19 didn't have that letter, you would make inquiry to their
20 archidocese of origin to determine whether or not they
21 were in good standing or if there was some adverse
22 information that you should be aware of?
23 A. That's right.
24 Q. And was that the policy while you were
25 Archbishop?
Page 578
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And was that the policy, to your knowledge,
3 under Archbishop Davis?
4 A. I would presume it was.
5 Q. And why would you presume it was?
6 A. Because I felt an obligation, any time that a
7 priest would ask me to celebrate the Eucharist, to call
8 and ask if he could do so and for them to get clearance
9 for him.
10 Q. And you felt that such a policy would be
11 reasonable and prudent?
12 A. Well, it was just common sense. I think this is
13 what it was. Here's a stranger whom I do not know, and
so
14 I -- this was -- I suppose as a pastor, that's part of
15 canon law, as well. As a pastor, that's my
16 responsibility. I can't accept anyone's word unless he's
17 known to me.
18 Q. Yesterday we talked about Exhibit 12, which is
19 Jason Sigler's personnel file, and I referred you to
20 documents 12-E, 12-F and 12-G, which -- correct me if
I'm
21 wrong -- appear to indicate that Jason Sigler was making
22 application for incardination some time in the middle of
23 1973, according to those letters; is that correct?
24 A. Yes, sir.
25 Q. And do you know if you were serving on the
Page 579
1 personnel board at that time, or can you remember?
2 A. I don't remember these letters being brought to
3 us, but I was serving either in '72-'73 -- I believe it
4 was, yes.
5 Q. So do you have any recollection of whether or
6 not you, while you were serving on the personnel board,
7 knew about Jason Sigler's request for incardination?
8 A. No, but we didn't have to. Maybe you're not
9 clear on the process that I was trying to understand, and
10 I'd like to clarify it, so that you can understand it.
11 Perhaps working backward might assist a little bit.
12 Before an archbishop signs -- before I, as the
Archbishop,
13 would have signed a document incardinating a priest
into
14 the Archidocese, I would have had to have in my hands
15 documents from his bishop excardinating him. It's a
16 formal document written in Latin which it says, "We are
17 willing to excardinate Father X from our diocese so that
18 he may be incardinated in your diocese, if this is your
19 wish."
20 So that is a formal document sent to us from his
21 bishop. We don't require or request that document,
22 rather, until other procedures had occurred.
23 Now, before that would have been a request from the
24 priest himself for incardination, an approval letter from
25 his ordinary, his bishop, for that concept. I would have
Page 580
1 asked my personnel board and deans, "What do you think
2 about this man," to get that as part of the process.
3 "He's been with us now for three years. You've had a
4 chance to see him in ministry and to associate with him
as
5 a brother priest. Do you think he should, in fact, be
6 incardinated into the Archidocese?" So this is all the
7 final actions that would take place.
8 Prior to that initiation of those actions, the priest
9 will have served in the Archidocese for three years. In
10 order for him to serve for three years, we would have
11 received clearance prior to that time from his bishop or
12 archbishop regarding his status, his intentions, his
13 purpose of being with us. So that there were clearly -- I
14 would have a clear understanding of who he was, and
they
15 would have a clear understanding of what the intentions
of
16 the priest is.
17 So there would have been two communications, formal
18 communications, between the dioceses prior to that
19 happening. The whole thing would have taken three to
four
20 years and sometimes much longer. Sometimes much
longer.
21 Q. Let me ask you this: Do you have any
22 recollection one way or the other of having been
involved
23 or seen or known of Father Sigler's request for
24 incardination when you were serving on the personnel
board --
25 MS. KENNEDY: Objection, asked and answered
Page 581
1 Q. -- prior to becoming Archbishop?
2 MS. KENNEDY: Objection, asked and
3 answered.
4 A. No, sir. I had no awareness because it had not
5 yet reached a point even to consult with us. The
6 archbishop was merely soliciting information at this point
7 and chose not to act on anything; and, as a matter of
8 fact, for the record, Father Jason Sigler was never
9 incardinated.
10 Q. That brings up my next question. How long, or
11 is there a policy with regard to this, how long do you
12 permit a priest from another archidocese to serve in the
13 Archidocese of Santa Fe, as a parish pastor without
14 incardinating him?
15 A. There is no policy that would govern that,
16 because the individual himself may choose not to
become
17 incardinated. I can give you an example. Father Don
18 Starkey, who served as chancellor for a few-year period,
19 had served in the Archidocese for some 14, 15 years
20 without requesting formal incardination.
21 Q. Let me ask you this: I want to direct your
22 attention to this particular case, because Jason Sigler
23 did make a request for incardination?
24 A. Yes. But you had asked a general question. You
25 said how long does a policy require a priest to be
present
Page 582
1 in the Archidocese, or how long can he stay without
being
2 incardinated? And I was trying to explain that there is
3 no real limitation, and I gave as an example one man
who
4 was with us for about 15 years before any effort or the
5 formality of incardination took place.
6 Q. Do you know if Jason Sigler's request for
7 incardination was denied?
8 A. I have no evidence of that. As far as I can see
9 from the documents that you've presented, it was simply
10 never acted upon.
11 Q. Do you know why?
12 A. I have no ideA.
13 Q. It was not acted upon -- it appears from these
14 documents -- and please correct me if I'm mistaken --
15 A. Sure.
16 Q. -- that after an application for incardination
17 was made by Jason Sigler in 1973 and contact had been
made
18 with his home archidocese and the Archidocese of
Lansing,
19 Michigan, no action was ever taken with respect to his
20 application?
21 MS. KENNEDY: I'm going to object. Calls
22 for speculation on the part of this witness.
23 Q. Is that what these documents indicate to you?
24 A. It's not what the documents indicate to me.
25 It's lack of any other documents that would indicate that
Page 583
1 he was denied or a decision was reached contrary to his
2 wishes.
3 The very fact that a bishop initiates this work is no
4 indication that he's obliged to come up with a decision
5 immediately. It doesn't happen that way.
6 Frequently priests who come to us, even on the first
7 meeting and say, "I would like to come here with an eye
8 for incardination, and I have written a letter requesting
9 this."
10 And we tell them, "Father, we'll go ahead and write
11 your bishop, let him know your intentions, but we have a
12 process that will last several years."
13 The bishop may take his own time. It's his decision,
14 and it's not a decision of a personnel board, because
15 they're advisory, and it's not a decision of anyone else.
16 It's his decision when he feels it is proper to
17 incardinate someone.
18 Q. And when you became Archbishop in 1974 --
19 A. Yes, sir.
20 Q. -- according to these records, Jason Sigler's
21 application for incardination was still pending?
22 A. Yes, it was.
23 Q. And Jason Sigler was terminated as a priest in
24 1982; is that correct?
25 MS. KENNEDY: I'm going to object to the
Page 584
1 phraseology, "terminated as a priest." It's vague.
2 Q. Well, is he still a priest?
3 A. No. He left the priesthood at his own volition
4 and married within six months or so.
5 Q. So you've never terminated Jason Sigler from
6 priestly duties -- let me rephrase that.
7 A. Yes, that's not accurate.
8 Q. You have never -- Jason Sigler resigned as a
9 priest in 1982?
10 A. Yes, sir.
11 Q. Prior to that time, did you take any action on
12 his application for incardination?
13 A. No, sir.
14 Q. Why not?
15 A. First of all, I did not know him. I had come
16 into the Archidocese on July 25th, 1974. One week later
17 he spoke to me with the intention of leaving the
18 Archidocese in order to return to Michigan to care for
his
19 ill parents. Within a month after that meeting, he had
20 left his parish and returned home. As far as I was
21 concerned, the man was gone forever. It was his request.
22 He did not belong to the Archidocese of Santa Fe. He
was
23 not incardinated, and he requested to -- notified me that
24 I would have to find another pastor to replace him,
25 because this was his intention. He left and we had to
Page 585
1 replace the parish in which he served with another priest.
2 Q. Which parish was he serving at the time?
3 A. I believe it was Fort Sumner.
4 Q. Did you know where he had served prior to that
5 time?
6 A. Apparently with St. Thomas Apostle Parish in
7 Abiquiu.
8 Q. Did you know how long he had been there?
9 A. I did not know how long he had been there, no.
10 Q. Did you pull out his personnel file when he
11 showed up to talk to you?
12 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Objection, asked and
13 answered.
14 MS. KENNEDY: Objection, asked and
15 answered.
16 A. There was no need to. The man was requesting
17 permission to leave, not to be incardinated.
18 Q. Did you discuss the issue of incardination at
19 that meeting?
20 A. No, Mr. Bennett. I was not even aware that he
21 had any desire to be incardinated. These documents that
22 you have shown me were in his file indeed. I had not
23 reviewed his file. He simply asked immediately, one
week
24 after I assumed office, if he could speak with me. We
25 spoke probably by phone, and informed me that he
wanted to
Page 586
1 leave and that I should be aware of this so that the
2 parish would not go unattended.
3 Q. And were you ever advised that he was back?
4 A. At any time? No. For a visit, you mean?
5 Q. To serve as a priest again in the Archidocese of
6 Santa Fe.
7 A. Oh. He called approximately -- close to two
8 years later. He placed a call from, I believe, Lansing,
9 Michigan, saying that his parents were now better, and he
10 wondered if there would be any possibility of him being
11 able to serve in the Archidocese of Santa Fe again.
12 My reply to him was, "You'll have to have the
13 personnel of that diocese send documentation on your
14 behalf, so that we know, in fact, that you have served
15 there effectively." I said, "After that, then I'll bring
16 this before the personnel board."
17 Q. Did you receive such a document?
18 A. Yes, I did.
19 Q. Does it appear in the personnel file?
20 MS. KENNEDY: Yes, it does.
21 MR. TINKLER: Are you answering the
22 questions now?
23 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Mr. Tinkler, which
24 document is -- or excuse me, Mr. Bennett, which
document
25 is it you're requesting us to look for?
Page 587
1 THE WITNESS: A letter of recommendation
2 from the Diocese of Lansing. This is a document dated
3 February 1, 1976, from the pastor of St. Mary Magdalen
4 Church in Hazel Park, Michigan.
5 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: It's 12-X.
6 Q. (By Mr. Bennett) And is that the document that
7 you had requested from Jason Sigler?
8 A. Yes. The parish at which he had been assigned.
9 Q. Why didn't you ask him for a letter from his
10 archidocese of origin, the Archidocese of Winnipeg?
11 A. Simply because he had not been in the
12 Archidocese of Winnipeg. He had apparently left the
13 Archidocese of Winnipeg over quite a few years and
was now --
14 his parents were now living in this area of the country,
15 and he had requested permission to go back there, and
16 that's where he would be serving.
17 If I had written to the archidocese, they would have
18 had to refer me to this area to get the letter of
19 recommendation, because they would not have known
him.
20 Q. Did you know at that time that he had served in
21 the Archidocese of Lansing, Michigan, prior to coming
to
22 St. Thomas Parish?
23 A. No, I did not.
24 Q. At the time you spoke with Jason Sigler, and he
25 requested to return to serve as a priest in the
Page 588
1 Archidocese of Santa Fe in 1976, did you review his
2 Archidocese personnel file?
3 MS. KENNEDY: Objection, asked and
4 answered.
5 A. No, sir, I did not.
6 Q. Why not?
7 A. He had been serving in the Archidocese up to the
8 time that he had left. It was my assumption that my
9 predecessor who had assigned him there had done all that
10 was necessary for clearance. I felt there was nothing
11 else that I needed to know.
12 He had gone to Michigan and had served there. The
13 pastor under whom he had served writes a letter of
14 approval and commendation, recommendation on his
behalf.
15 I felt that I had covered the bases as best I knew how
and
16 that was necessary.
17 Q. But you didn't know whether or not your
18 predecessor had conducted a proper investigation, did
you?
19 A. There's a lot of things you don't know -- you
20 have to assume in your life from day to day. I have to
21 trust that my predecessor had done that which was
22 necessary for any action that he would take.
23 Q. You personally, at the time you authorized Jason
24 Sigler to return to the Archidocese of Santa Fe in 1976,
25 did not know anything about Jason Sigler's past before
he
Page 589
1 came to the Archidocese and served at St. Thomas
Parish?
2 A. That is right.
3 Q. Didn't you think that was something you'd want
4 to know?
5 A. It didn't occur to me to go to any personnel
6 file and see what would be in there. I simply was dealing
7 with the man's request, taking those steps that were my
8 responsibility and then bringing that before the personnel
9 board to see what would transpire.
10 Q. In hindsight, don't you think you would have
11 wanted to look at that personnel file?
12 A. Again, as I said yesterday, you know, hindsight
13 is 20/20 vision, and there's a lot of things that we would
14 like to have done earlier, but we can't always be held to
15 have covered everything as we would see things now. It
16 just isn't the same.
17 Q. In hindsight, would you have wanted to look at
18 that personnel file?
19 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Objection, asked and
20 answered.
21 MR. BENNETT: I haven't heard an answer
22 yet. That's why I'm asking the question.
23 A. I'm saying, in hindsight, there's a lot of
24 things I think I would like to have done differently.
25 Q. Is this one of them?
Page 590
1 A. It would possibly be one of them. I don't know
2 whether I would be motivated strongly to do that. But
3 hearing what we're talking about right now, obviously
4 we're saying that maybe that would have been a good
thing.
5 But if there had been nothing in that file at all contrary
6 to the gentleman, would you have been saying that it was
7 something that I should have done?
8 Q. But in this case, you know there was something
9 in that file, as you term it, "contrary to the gentleman."
10 A. Right now.
11 Q. That's correct. You could have been aware of
12 that contrary information in 1976; isn't that right?
13 MR. KONRAD: Objection. This is real vague
14 and ambiguous.
15 Q. Let's be real specific, Archbishop.
16 [The witness conferred with his attorney.]
17 Q. Archbishop, have you finished consulting with
18 your lawyer?
19 A. Yes, sir.
20 Q. Archbishop, please correct me if I'm wrong, you
21 have in front of you document 12-K, which is the letter
22 from Reverend James A. Murray dated June 28, 1973,
which
23 refers to the fact that Jason Sigler had become involved
24 "in re turpi" with some boys in the parish in Michigan.
25 If you had reviewed Jason Sigler's personnel file in
Page 591
1 1976, when he made application to return to perform
priest
2 duties in the Archidocese of Santa Fe, would you have
3 discovered that letter?
4 MR. KONRAD: Objection, calls for
5 speculation. That assumes facts not in evidence.
6 A. If I had reviewed the file, this letter would
7 have been in the file, and I would have seen it. Again,
8 in reading this letter, you know, in the letter, you
9 didn't mention that the chancellor also had some positive
10 things to say about the priest. It is true he mentions
11 that -- he said, "He was well received by the people and
12 was generally effective in the exercise of his ministry.
13 Unfortunately, he allegedly became involved 'in re turpi'
14 with some boys in the parish." And he also says, "To the
15 best of my knowledge, the allegations had some basis in
16 fact."
17 We discussed "in re turpi" yesterday and were trying
18 to -- I think all of us were focusing on child
19 molestation. "In re turpi," as I was trying to explain
20 yesterday, too, is an expression that's very broad, very
21 broad. It's not something that's very narrow.
22 Q. What about "'in re turpi' with some boys"?
23 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Excuse me, Mr. Bennett.
24 Have you finished your response, Archbishop?
25 THE WITNESS: No.
Page 592
1 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Please allow the
2 Archbishop to finish his response.
3 Q. I'm sorry, Archbishop.
4 A. I wanted to say that it's an expression that can
5 be very broad. Anything that is wrong, "in re turpi,"
6 contributing to the delinquency of a minor in a way would
7 be considered "in re turpi." Allowing them to drink
8 alcoholic beverages, allowing them to attend an adult
9 gathering of any kind. "In re turpi" could be many
10 things, not necessarily, nor excluding it, sexual
11 molestation of a child.
12 Q. If you'd have seen this letter that said "'in re
13 turpi' with some boys," wouldn't you have wanted to find
14 out what it did mean?
15 MR. KONRAD: Objection, calls for
16 speculation.
17 A. It would seem to me if I had read that letter, I
18 would have wanted to find out more about him, yes.
19 Q. Including what "'in re turpi' with some boys"
20 meant?
21 MR. KONRAD: Objection, calls for
22 speculation.
23 Q. Isn't that right?
24 A. I would have tried to find out from this
25 gentleman, Reverend James A. Murray, what he knew
about
Page 593
1 Father Jason Sigler.
2 Q. And you would have wanted to have known what he
3 meant by "'in re turpi' with some boys"?
4 MR. KONRAD: Objection, calls for
5 speculation.
6 Q. Isn't that right?
7 A. I think that I would like to have found out, not
8 only that, but what he also meant about, "It seems that
9 the allegations had some basis in fact." There had been
10 no apparently proof of anything, whatever the
allegations
11 were. To this day, neither you nor I know exactly what
12 those allegations were.
13 Q. And you certainly didn't know what they were in
14 1976, because you didn't call Father Murray?
15 MS. KENNEDY: I'm going to object. I think
16 this line of questioning is becoming argumentative and
17 also it's asked and answered.
18 Q. Isn't that right?
19 A. I did not call Father Murray, no. But I
20 received a letter from the pastor in which he served
21 saying that again he had served during that time, of his
22 presence in Michigan, very effectively. He was a hard
23 worker, and he was pleased to recommend him to us.
24 Q. When Jason Sigler called you in 1976, asking to
25 come back to the Archidocese of Santa Fe to serve
again as
Page 594
1 a priest in the Archidocese, did you know at that time
2 that he had been treated at the Servants of the Paraclete?
3 MR. KONRAD: Objection to the use of the
4 term "treated."
5 MR. TINKLER: That's a good objection.
6 MR. KONRAD: They never claimed to treat
7 people. I mean, the psychiatrists treated them. So the
8 objection is that it assumes facts not in evidence.
9 Q. (By Mr. Bennett) Let's stick with the question.
10 A. Could I get your question again, please?
11 Q. At the time Jason Sigler called you in 1976,
12 requesting that he be allowed to, once again, serve as a
13 priest in the Archidocese of Santa Fe, did you know that
14 he had been treated at the Servants of the Paraclete on
a
15 prior occasion?
16 MR. KONRAD: I object to the form of the
17 question, as it misstates the evidence. There is no
18 evidence that he was treated by Servants of the
Paraclete
19 or ordinary Catholic priests. He was treated at Lovelace
20 Hospital in Albuquerque by a psychiatrist.
21 MR. BENNETT: You know, I'm really -- it
22 really is bothersome when you attempt to testify.
23 MR. KONRAD: It's bothersome when you
24 attempt to testify by asking your question which
misstates
25 the evidence.
Page 595
1 MR. BENNETT: When you want to be under
2 oath and testify, we can do that, but not today.
3 MR. KONRAD: Okay. The same goes for you.
4 MR. BENNETT: Now I had asked the question
5 to elicit information, and he can answer the question yes
6 or no.
7 Q. My question stands, Archbishop.
8 MR. KONRAD: And my objection stands.
9 A. Sir, in 1976, I do not recall at this time
10 whether I was aware that Father Jason Sigler had, in
fact,
11 been part of any program sponsored by the Paraclete
12 Fathers, which, in fact, included both a type of program
13 that they had included both spiritual counseling,
14 spiritual rehabilitation, which is at that time conducted
15 apparently at Jemez, and also included psychotherapy,
and
16 these men were referred to professional psychiatrists.
17 I was unaware -- and I cannot recall at this time,
18 whether I was aware in 1976 -- whether Father Jason
Sigler
19 had gone through any type of program with the Servants
of
20 the Paraclete. I will speculate a moment for you. If I
21 was aware --
22 Q. Don't speculate.
23 A. But you've been asking me to speculate for two
24 days.
25 Q. No, I've been asking for your opinion as
Page 596
1 Archbishop based upon facts that we have before us. So
2 please answer in that vein.
3 A. All right.
4 MS. KENNEDY: Is there a pending question?
5 MR. TINKLER: No.
6 A. No, the question is, I cannot recall at this
7 moment whether I was aware of it or not, and I'll leave
8 the next question to you.
9 Q. Thank you. Were you aware that he had been, at
10 that time, in 1976, that Jason Sigler had been a resident
11 at the Servants of the Paraclete prior to that telephone
12 call?
13 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Asked and answered.
14 MS. KENNEDY: Objection, asked and
15 answered.
16 A. I just replied, sir, that I do not recall
17 whether I knew that he had been a resident there or not.
18 Q. When do you first have a recollection of knowing
19 that fact?
20 A. I think it was in conjunction with the -- in
21 1981, I believe it was, when allegations were brought
22 against Father Jason Sigler concerning sexual
molestation
23 at St. Therese Parish in Albuquerque, and I asked him
then
24 to return to the Servants of the Paraclete because he
had,
25 in fact, gone there in 1978. I believe it was in
Page 597
1 conjunction with that time that I became aware of the
fact
2 that he had, in fact, been there before.
3 Q. Been there before 1978?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. In 1978, when you sent him to the Servants of
6 the Paraclete, did you learn at that time that he had been
7 there on a prior occasion?
8 A. No, sir. I was under the impression, and in
9 fact, that recalls my answer for 1976, as well. In 1978,
10 I was under the impression that I was sending Father
Jason
11 Sigler to the Servants of the Paraclete for the first
12 time.
13 Q. And in 1978, you sent him to the Servants of the
14 Paraclete based upon the initiation of complaints from
the
15 parish in which he was then serving in Las Vegas; is
that
16 a fair statement?
17 A. Yes, it was. But I think you have to explain
18 the "complaints."
19 Q. Any type of complaints.
20 A. Yes. Complaints were regarding his personal
21 behavior, his anger, his insultive manner against people,
22 his lack of control of language from the pulpit. This was
23 all part of a behavior that I felt was severe and had
24 asked him to go to the Servants of the Paraclete for
25 treatment of that disorder.
Page 598
1 Q. And so it was your opinion in 1978 that Jason
2 Sigler had some sort of disorder for which he needed
3 treatment at the Servants of the Paraclete?
4 A. Yes, sir.
5 Q. And at that time, when you held that opinion,
6 did you then pull out his priest personnel file and look
7 at it?
8 MS. KENNEDY: Objection, asked and
9 answered.
10 A. No, sir, I did not.
11 Q. Why not?
12 A. Again, it did not occur to me to have to refer
13 to anything in a personnel file that I didn't think
14 contained anything. Nothing --
15 Q. How did you know it didn't contain anything?
16 A. Because nothing had been brought to my
17 attention. No one had referred anything to me in
18 reference to Father Jason Sigler.
19 Q. Nor had you looked at his personnel file?
20 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Asked and answered.
21 A. True.
22 Q. In 1978, when you believed that Jason Sigler had
23 some sort of disorder that needed treatment at the
24 Servants of the Paraclete, did it occur to you that he
may
25 have had other disorders that may have been reflected in
Page 599
1 his personnel file?
2 A. No, sir. I was focused in on his own disorderly
3 conduct as a priest, the insults and offenses against
4 people, and I was concerned about that.
5 Q. And did you want to know or would it have been
6 reasonable for you to want to find out if he had
committed --
7 or there were any complaints in his personnel file
8 concerning that type of activity before?
9 A. Sir, again, as I mentioned yesterday, I'm not a
10 suspicious man by nature. I had not heard of any
11 complaints prior to that time. No one advised me of any
12 other prior complaints. I had no reason to think that
13 there had been complaints. When these came against
the
14 man, I felt that I had to address that which was before
me
15 and address it quickly, and I did that.
16-23 (DELETED)
24 A. Sir, I don't know whether the position of an
25 Archbishop requires you to be suspicious. I think my own
Page 600
1 training has been one always of trust and of faith. I've
2 been taught to trust people and to have my faith in my
3 God. I am not skilled at trying to listen to what people
4 are saying to see if they're lying to me or not. I am a
5 person who would like to believe that they're telling the
6 truth.
7 Q. Did you ask Jason Sigler whether or not he had
8 ever been treated for any disorder when you sent him to
9 the Servants of the Paraclete in 1978?
10 A. I don't recall asking him any question of that
11 nature.
12 Q. Do you think that might have been prudent?
13 A. I don't know. Many things may have been good to
14 ask, may have been helpful, but that simply did not
occur
15 to me to ask that question. I don't recall whether I did.
16 Q. Archbishop, during the period of time Jason
17 Sigler was in the Servants of the Paraclete from 1978,
18 when you sent him there onward, did you receive any
19 reports from any of his therapists or psychologists or
20 supervisors or superiors at the Servants?
21 MR. KONRAD: Object to the question. It
22 assumes that he had superiors, supervisors and things
like
23 that at Servants, which is not in evidence and won't be
in
24 evidence.
25 A. No, sir. I don't recall any evaluation or any
Page 601
1 updating about progress. And I have to assume that since
2 his therapy was being given to him outside of the home of
3 the Servants of the Paraclete, I think at that time they
4 were using facilities in Albuquerque, like the Lovelace
5 Clinic and the Nazareth Sanitorium and other private
6 psychiatrists. Those were the places they would refer
7 them to. I didn't receive anything from anyone. I didn't
8 even know who his therapist would have been. I do recall
9 a letter from one of the superiors of the Servants of the
10 Paraclete, apparently after he had been there a number
of
11 months.
12 Q. Is Exhibit 12-DD that letter?
13 A. This is indeed a letter from Father Joseph
14 McNamara, who was the Servant General of the
Paraclete
15 community addressed to me on October 4, 1978.
16 Q. Is that the letter to which you were referring?
17 A. Yes, I was recalling that letter.
18 Q. And in this letter, it appears that Father
19 Joseph McNamara is requesting permission from you to
allow
20 Father Sigler to accept weekend and supply ministry in
the
21 Archidocese; is that --
22 MR. KONRAD: Object.
23 Q. -- what it appears to you to be requesting?
24 MR. KONRAD: Object to the question. The
25 letter speaks for it itself. It says a number of
Page 602
1 additional things.
2 A. Yes. That's the final paragraph. Prior to
3 that, he mentions that he has been under the care of Dr.
4 Duane Sherwin, who had prescribed medication. "He has
5 been a great help with our sick and aged Fathers at our
6 nursing home. He has conducted himself in an exemplary
7 manner."
8 And then he asks, "Would it be possible, Archbishop,
9 if Father Sigler could accept weekend and supply
ministry
10 in the Archidocese?"
11 He says, "I feel that this would be good for him, and
12 I am confident that he will be able to function
13 responsibly."
14 These are assurances that are contained in his
15 letter, and so he makes the request of me whether that
16 would be possible. His letter was one of request, and his
17 letter was one of assurance, as far as he was able to
18 grant it, that if permission were granted to him that
19 Father would function responsibly.
20 MR. KONRAD: I'd like the record to reflect
21 that there are three more sentences in that paragraph,
and
22 I'd like to have them read into the record at this point.
23 Q. And is Exhibit 12-EE your response to that
24 letter?
25 A. Yes, sir, this is my reply to his letter. It's
Page 603
1 dated October 25th. I'm indicating that I'm replying to
2 his letter of October 4. And I indicated that, "I have no
3 objections to Father Sigler assisting those parishes of
4 the Archidocese which request his assistance for weekend
5 or supply ministry." And so I grant faculties to him.
6 And then Father McNamara, of course, would have to
make
7 arrangements with any parish who may need help.
8 And I conclude simply by saying I'm grateful to
9 Father McNamara and the staff at Via Coeli for the
10 assistance that they've rendered to Father Sigler.
11 Q. Now, in considering Father McNamara's request
12 and in making your response which allowed Jason Sigler
to
13 return to a parish in the Archidocese on a temporary
14 basis, did you review his personnel file?
15 MS. KENNEDY: Objection, asked and
16 answered.
17 MR. KONRAD: And mischaracterization of the
18 evidence.
19 A. No, sir.
20 Q. Why not?
21 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Asked and answered.
22 A. The request from Father McNamara was whether
23 Father Jason Sigler could have faculties to help when
24 asked for weekend assistance to help supply a parish for
a
25 Mass on one weekend or another weekend. This was not
an
Page 604
1 assignment in the Archidocese. This was not an
2 appointment. It was a request for faculties for time to
3 time as the need may arise. And on that basis, I granted
4 him faculties, not an assignment. So I simply did not
5 again feel any need to review the file, as I mentioned
6 before. I just did not feel a need to review it.
7 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: It's 10:30. Why don't
8 we take a 15-minute break.
9 MR. GOFFE: The time is 10:31. We will go
10 off the record.
11 [A recess was taken.]
12 MR. GOFFE: The time is 10:56. We are back
13 on the record.
14 Q. (By Mr. Bennett) Archbishop, after you received
15 the October 4, 1978, letter from Father McNamara, did
you
16 have any discussion or did you call Dr. Duane Sherwin
to
17 request a report on Jason Sigler's progress?
18 A. No, sir, I did not call Dr. Sherwin.
19 Q. Why not?
20 A. It just seemed to me that I was not dealing
21 directly with Dr. Sherwin. I had sent a priest to the
22 program at Jemez Springs. They, in turn, employ their
23 psychiatrists as part of their program, and the
24 psychiatrist deals directly with the superior of the
25 program, and he deals with me. I had no acquaintance
with
Page 605
1 Dr. Sherwin. I had never received any report from him.
2 And so I just dealt with Father McNamarA.
3 Q. Between the time you received Father McNamara's
4 letter and when you replied on October the 25th, granting
5 temporary -- or weekend and supply ministry faculties to
6 Jason Sigler, did you call Father McNamara or anyone
else
7 at the Servants of the Paraclete concerning Jason Sigler?
8 A. I don't recall any phone calls. That does not
9 exclude any phone calls that may have been made. But I
do
10 not recall making any phone calls.
11 Q. Do you recall discussing with anyone, prior to
12 granting temporary faculties on October 25th, 1978, the
13 condition of Father Sigler?
14 A. If I would have called anyone, it would have
15 been Father McNamara, but I do not recall that.
16 Q. Do you recall being curious to ascertain what
17 they had found out concerning Jason Sigler's disorder?
18 A. I was curious, I suppose, that he was -- I was
19 happy to know that I had received a very favorable
report
20 on Father Jason Sigler, and that, in fact, they were
21 making recommendations for continued ministry,
although on
22 a very limited basis. I was just pleased with that. I
23 may have phoned Father McNamara as a follow-up to
his
24 letter, but I have no recollection of that.
25 Q. My question was, were you curious at that time
Page 606
1 as to what Jason Sigler's disorder was?
2 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Objection, calls for
3 speculation on the part of the witness. Also, it
4 misstates evidence. There is no evidence that Jason
5 Sigler had a disorder, if you're using it in a technical
6 sense, nor is this witness competent to state whether he
7 had one or not.
8 MR. BENNETT: This is a speaking objection,
9 again, and it's very disruptive.
10 Q. But let's do it this way, Archbishop, and I'm
11 sorry we have to do it this way.
12 A. Sure.
13 Q. But because of your attorney, we must. You felt
14 when you sent Jason Sigler to the Servants of the
15 Paraclete in 1978 -- and you've testified to this -- that
16 he had a disorder of some type; isn't that correct?
17 A. I testified to the fact that his behavior had
18 reached a point that it had become severely offensive to
19 people and was manifesting itself through abusive
20 language, irritability and his anger; and that made the
21 relationship to parish members very delicate and
critical.
22 And I felt that if he was going to be a competent and
23 effective priest, he needed to have some treatment
24 regarding his anger for whatever the causes may have
been
25 for that.
Page 607
1 Q. And you characterized that behavior as a
2 disorder?
3 A. I think I was repeating the term that you had
4 used. I don't know exactly what a disorder means. If it
5 has a technical meaning, I certainly don't want to be held
6 to a technical meaning.
7 Q. Well, let's do it this way.
8 A. I'm not certain what that means. Disorder
9 behavior means to me that behavior that's not acceptable.
10 Q. And with respect to this acceptable behavior,
11 were you curious in 1978 to find out why Jason Sigler
was
12 experiencing this unacceptable behavior?
13 A. No, I do not recall that I was curious at that
14 point to ask Father McNamara for any explanation. The
15 fact of the matter may be that I may have asked him
16 something by phone. But I'm not certain Father
McNamara
17 would have had all of the details either, since they were
18 not the psychiatrists or the psychologists.
19 Q. Now, I would refer you to Exhibit 12-FF, which
20 is a letter from Father Gregory McCormick of the
Servants
21 of the Paraclete to you dated February 21, 1979. Do you
22 recall receiving that letter?
23 A. May I take a moment to read it?
24 Q. Yes, please.
25 A. I don't have an immediate recollection of the
Page 608
1 receipt of the letter, but it was addressed to me, so
2 obviously I did receive it.
3 Q. Do you have any recollection of having
4 requesting that such a letter be written by Father
5 McCormick?
6 A. No, sir. I was not aware or familiar with
7 Father McCormick, so I would not have solicited that
from
8 him.
9 Q. Do you recall soliciting such a letter from
10 anyone?
11 A. No, sir.
12 Q. The next letter that appears in the personnel
13 file is document 12-GG, which is a letter from you
14 addressed to Jason Sigler. Do you recall sending that
15 letter?
16 A. The letter was on this date, July 30th, 1979.
17 It was written from me to Father Jason Sigler. I don't
18 recall writing the letter, but I did write it, yes.
19 Q. And in this letter, you granted Jason Sigler
20 faculties at the St. Therese Parish in the Archidocese?
21 A. Yes, sir, and it was done, as the letter
22 indicates, because he had served apparently very
23 successfully and had the high recommendation of the
24 pastor. He had been serving there apparently on a
25 temporary basis assisting the priest without canonical
Page 609
1 assignment, like a test situation.
2 Q. You mean other than a weekend or weekend supply
3 ministry?
4 A. I have reason to believe that he had been
5 serving with Father Hunt more frequently, so that Father
6 Hunt would have a chance to evaluate his ministry, more
7 like part-time, not just weekend.
8 Q. But more time than for which you approved in
9 October of 1978?
10 A. The request in October 1978 had been for supply
11 ministry and weekend ministry. I'm not aware of what
12 areas that he may have served at. Apparently one of the
13 parishes that they felt would be -- that needed assistance
14 and was willing to work together with Father Jason
Sigler,
15 was that of St. Therese in Albuquerque, and so he was
16 assigned to help there.
17 Apparently, all the time that he spent with Father
18 Hunt was a very successful period of time, both on
19 weekends, supply ministry, when supply was needed,
say
20 funerals or weddings or such instances. So that the
21 pastor could give a recommendation such as contained
in
22 the letter.
23 Q. My question is, do you know if Jason Sigler was
24 in St. Therese Parish on a more frequent basis than just
25 weekend or supply ministry?
Page 610
1 A. No. I don't see any evidence, any letters that
2 I asked him to serve like with an assignment there, even
3 part-time. The evidence that I have is that we've sent
4 him -- excuse me, that we gave permission to the
Servants
5 of the Paraclete to allow him to serve on weekend
ministry
6 and supply ministry. The tone of the letter is what I'm
7 referring to, is that Father Hunt appears to be referring
8 to the fact that he had witnessed his services to him in
9 various fashions that he could give such a letter of
10 recommendation.
11 Q. My question is, when you granted faculties to
12 Jason Sigler on July 30, 1979, did you know whether or
not
13 he had been serving in St. Therese Parish on a basis
more
14 frequent than weekend and supply ministry?
15 A. No, sir.
16 MS. KENNEDY: Objection, asked and
17 answered.
18 MR. BENNETT: You know, I will give you a
19 continuing asked-and-answered objection. There is no
such
20 thing in a deposition format. You can object to the form.
21 You may have an asked-and-answered objection for the
22 remainder of this deposition. I would appreciate it if
23 you would not interrupt the testimony.
24 MS. KENNEDY: Well, I have to put my
25 objections on the record.
Page 611
1 MR. BENNETT: And you can please put a
2 legal objection on the record, which is an objection to
3 the form of the question. With respect to that objection,
4 you have a continuing objection, so you don't have to
5 interrupt the testimony anymore.
6 Q. (By Mr. Bennett) Archbishop, can you please
7 answer my question?
8 A. Would you kindly repeat it. I think I've lost
9 my train of thought.
10 Q. I've lost mine, too.
11 [The record was read by the reporter.]
12 Q. There's certainly nothing in this personnel file
13 to indicate, one way or another, that fact; is that
14 correct?
15 A. That's correct.
16 Q. When you were considering granting faculties to
17 Jason Sigler to serve in the St. Therese Parish, did you
18 speak with anyone at the Servants of the Paraclete?
19 A. I do not have evidence, did not make any letters
20 to that effect, but I would suspect that I would have
21 called the Servants of the Paraclete. I had to call them
22 because it would entail a transfer from residence at the
23 Servants of the Paraclete to St. Therese Parish.
24 MR. KONRAD: Objection, move to strike.
25 That was speculative. You haven't shown him any
Page 612
1 documents, but I think the evidence is clear that Sigler
2 left Servants of the Paraclete in early February '79 and
3 moved into a place called Bethany House.
4 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: May we go off the record
5 a moment?
6 MR. BENNETT: No. I have no reason to go
7 off the record.
8 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Well, if you -- that
9 objection.
10 MR. BENNETT: The deposition is in
11 progress, and the objection again is a speaking
objection.
12 That's coaching the witness.
13 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: It's your deposition.
14 MR. BENNETT: I want this witness's
15 recollection of what his knowledge is.
16 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Go ahead, Mr. Tinkler,
17 You don't need to make what you call a speaking
objection.
18 MR. BENNETT: And my name is not Mr.
19 Tinkler.
20 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: I'm sorry, Mr. Bennett.
21 I apologize to you. I'm looking at Mr. Tinkler, saying
22 Mr. Tinkler. I mean Mr. Bennett. I apologize to you for
23 that.
24 MR. TINKLER: I agree with him.
25 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: I knew that, as well,
Page 613
1 which is why it doesn't make much difference to either of
2 you.
3 Q. (By Mr. Bennett) Please answer the question.
4 Do you recall it?
5 A. I didn't know you'd asked one, I'm sorry. I
6 think I answered it, in fact.
7 MS. KENNEDY: I believe so.
8 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: You did.
9 Q. (By Mr. Bennett) Well, you indicated that you
10 would have had to have made contact with someone at
the
11 Servants of the Paraclete?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. In that contact, did you discuss with them Jason
14 Sigler's current condition?
15 MR. KONRAD: Well, objection calls for
16 speculation. He said he doesn't recall it. He must have
17 done it, but he doesn't recall any contact. How can he
18 tell you what it is?
19 Q. Do you recall a contact?
20 A. I do not recall the contact with anyone. The
21 statement that I had made previously was that I would
have
22 needed to call, make contact, to indicate that we were
23 willing to place Jason Sigler in a position such as St.
24 Therese.
25 Q. And would that have been your policy at that
Page 614
1 time?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And what other information would you require, if
4 any, from the Servants of the Paraclete in accordance
with
5 that policy?
6 A. I would have simply requested whether they had
7 any objection to the proposal.
8-25 (DELETED)
Page 615
1-4 (DELETED)
5 Q. And you also cannot say whether or not the
6 procedure was followed?
7 A. I would have to say that my procedure was
8 followed because I would not have assigned a man full-
time
9 to a parish without having consulted with the person who
10 was his, at that time, local superior.
11 Q. And did you consult with his therapist, Dr.
12 Duane Sherwin, or anyone else who was treating him,
prior
13 to granting him full faculties at the St. Therese Parish?
14 A. I have never consulted with Dr. Duane Sherwin.
15 I do not know the gentleman. I consulted with the man
16 whom Dr. Duane Sherwin, I suppose, had to report to,
17 because the program was together as -- even though the
18 program was the Servants of the Paraclete, but the
19 psychiatrists were the ones who handled the professional
20 type of therapy for them.
21 Q. Was it the policy of the Archidocese at that
22 time to receive reports from therapists of priests who
23 were being returned from the Servants of the Paraclete
to
24 active ministry?
25 A. No, sir. I don't recall any type of reports
Page 616
1 from psychiatrists during those years, the '70s, at all,
2 from psychiatrists. It just seems to me -- and this is
3 speculative on my own part -- that they probably did not
4 submit any reports to anyone. They probably respected
the
5 whatever you call it, the confidential nature of the
6 relationship between the therapist and the client.
7 Q. At what time did you begin to receive reports
8 from therapists?
9 A. I began to receive some reports in the 1980s,
10 probably around mid 1980s.
11 Q. And these are the reports that you referred to
12 before that you destroyed after receipt?
13 A. These are reports that would contain the stamp
14 mark, "To be destroyed" after having read it, or "To be
15 returned to the center," and they would destroy it.
16 Q. So no policy was in effect within the
17 Archidocese between 1974 and the mid 1980s that
required
18 reports, whether or not they were to be destroyed, to be
19 sent to you from therapists of priests applying for
20 faculties in the Archidocese?
21 A. That's right. There was no procedure of that
22 nature at all.
23 Q. Why not?
24 A. Apparently they didn't offer them. If they have
25 a client-therapist confidentiality, they don't have to
Page 617
1 extend a report to you. They can refuse that. I have
2 always felt that you go to a psychiatrist/psychologist
3 because you want to receive confidential treatment. And
4 it appears to me that's the confidentiality that has to be
5 observed.
6 If I would write you a letter asking for information
7 from a particular client, I don't believe that you could
8 supply that, because there is a confidential nature
9 between yourself and a client.
10 Q. If my client authorized a disclosure to you, I
11 could supply that; isn't that your understanding?
12 MS. KENNEDY: Object, calls for legal
13 conclusion.
14 A. Yes, sir.
15 Q. Isn't that your understanding?
16 A. If a client would authorize that, I suppose that
17 you could do it, and I suppose then a psychiatrist could
18 do it.
19 Q. So why didn't you require your priests applying
20 for faculties in your parishes to authorize the release of
21 a report from their therapist to you prior to making the
22 decision to return them to parish work?
23 A. Because, sir, I had had no direct contact with
24 the therapist. My contact was with the Servants of the
25 Paraclete; and with their letters or comments on the
phone
Page 618
1 of assurances, I felt that was adequate. I had not
2 received any type of explanation of the progress of the
3 therapy being treated. I simply depended upon the
4 psychiatrists -- excuse me, upon the Servants of the
5 Paraclete to give me the information that they, in turn,
6 had received from the psychiatrist.
7 Q. Were you aware that in the late 1960s the
8 Servants of the Paraclete were sending such reports to the
9 Archidocese?
10 A. No, sir. I was not involved with the
11 administration of the Archidocese in the late 1960s.
12 Q. From that time forward, until the mid '80s, were
13 you aware that any such reports were sent to the office
of
14 the Archidocese?
15 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Objection, that
16 misstates -- one, such evidence is not in the record here,
17 and number two, I believe, in fact, misstates the facts.
18 And if you want a speaking objection, I'll explain to you
19 why it misstates the facts. That's an incorrect statement
20 of what, in fact, the Servants of the Paracletes did.
21 Q. To your knowledge, were any reports, written
22 reports, concerning the psychological status of a resident
23 of the Servants of the Paraclete from either the Servants
24 or the residents' therapists sent to the office of the
25 Archidocese from 1960 to the mid '80s?
Page 619
1 A. I was not aware of any type of reports being
2 sent at that time.
3 Q. Including what might be characterized as a
4 monthly status report?
5 MS. KENNEDY: I'm going to object, assumes
6 facts not in evidence.
7 MR. TINKLER: You know, we're not in trial.
8 We don't have to prove our case before we can ask a
9 question.
10 MS. KENNEDY: Well, you know, I don't think
11 it's proper, Mr. Tinkler, to ask questions which misstate
12 the evidence in a deposition or in a trial.
13 MR. BENNETT: There is no evidence here.
14 MR. TINKLER: This is a deposition.
15 MR. BENNETT: We are looking for evidence.
16 We are discovering evidence. That's what this. It's
17 discovery. I am entitled to ask questions that may
18 discover evidence.
19 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: I don't think it does
20 the witness --
21 MR. BENNETT: I don't have to -- I don't
22 know what he knows.
23 MR. TINKLER: He asked him if he was aware.
24 He didn't say it's a fact. I mean, this is totally
25 disruptive of the deposition to object for objection's
Page 620
1 sake. You're not going to get anywhere in Court with it.
2 When we have evidcence and we ask it at trial, that's
3 different. But we're not at trial.
4 MR. KONRAD: Im going to say something.
5 This deposition is being taken in a number of cases,
6 including Sigler cases against the Archidocese of Santa
Fe
7 which were filed either in late '92 or -- late '91 or
8 early '92, and there is an abundance of evidence in the
9 record in those cases. And I think it is -- especially
10 when you're asking an Archbishop about things that
11 happened over 15 years ago. It's very improper and
12 misleading to the witness to mischaracterize the
evidence
13 to him.
14 So I think we do have to object to
15 mischaracterizations of the evidence, and I think we've
16 had a whole line of questioning -- probably the last 20
17 minutes has resolved around an incorrect chronology.
18 Sigler left Via Coeli Monastery in early February of '79.
19 He lived at a place called Bethany House in
Albuquerque.
20 He worked at St. Therese and then was assigned to St.
21 Therese in the summer of '79 on a permanent basis.
That's
22 in the record. There are no facts to the contrary.
23 He did not leave Servants of the Paraclete and
24 be assigned to St. Therese or -- which seems to be the
25 assumption that you have, upon which all of your
questions
Page 621
1 were based.
2 MR. BENNETT: Well, I know that your
3 recitation of history has got to be the most accurate, but
4 I'm entitled to explore the recollection of this witness,
5 whatever it is.
6 MR. KONRAD: That is not my recollection of
7 history. I wasn't around anymore than you were. But that
8 is the evidence in the record.
9 MR. BENNETT: It doesn't make any
10 difference.
11 Q. (By Mr. Bennett) Archbishop, did you ever know
12 that documents which I will characterize as monthly
status
13 reports were received by the Archbishop's office from
the
14 period of 1960 to the mid '80s from therapists of priests?
15 A. I am unaware of any monthly status reports,
16 having been submitted to the Archidocese during this
time
17 that we are discussing. I know nothing of the '60s, and I
18 recall that there were no status reports in the '70s, as
19 well.
20 Q. And does your answer include such status reports
21 from the Servants of the Paraclete?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. So according to this record, Jason Sigler was
24 assigned as an associate pastor of St. Therese Parish
25 effective July 1, 1979; isn't that right?
Page 622
1 A. Yes, sir.
2 Q. But your date of the letter is July 30, 1979.
3 Does that mean that he had been an associate pastor at
St.
4 Therese Parish for 30 days before you granted faculties?
5 A. No, sir. If there's a discrepancy in the date --
6 I don't recall how the letter reads. I may have -- thank
7 you.
8 Yes, the assignment was effective July 1, 1979. I
9 would have given oral, verbal faculties to Father Sigler
10 and permission to Father Hunt to receive him effective
11 July 1. It was simply my own negligence in getting a
12 formal letter written at a later date.
13 This frequently happened with different assignments.
14 Oftentimes in a letter, I will include, "Excuse me for
15 being tardy in getting a formal letter to you." But the
16 assignment goes through with the decision.
17 Q. Are you certain that happened in this case?
18 A. It does not state it, but I am certain that he
19 would not have been made effective July 1, unless I had
20 written or given him, rather, oral permission to be there
21 by July 1.
22 Q. Do you know for a fact, one way or another, what
23 happened?
24 A. Sir, I don't recall one way or another, but I
25 know that no man can become a full-time associate
pastor
Page 623
1 without the explicit permission of the bishop of that
2 diocese.
3 Q. How long after granting Jason Sigler permission
4 to be a full-time pastor at St. Therese Parish did it come
5 to your attention that he had molested young boys there?
6 A. It must have been -- well, the documents that
7 you have indicate it accurately, but it was in 1981, which
8 would have been approximately a year and six, seven
months
9 or whatever it is.
10 Q. Let me show you document 12-HH, which is a
11 letter dated March 23, 1981, to George Bernard Cardinal
12 Flahiff, Archbishop of Winnipeg, signed by Reverend
D.J.
13 Starkey and ask if that refreshes your memory on this
14 question?
15 A. Okay. Date: March 23rd.
16 Q. Does that refresh your recollection as to the
17 time?
18 A. Yes, sir.
19 Q. And what recollection was refreshed?
20 A. That apparently in the month of March of 1981,
21 Father Jason Sigler was removed from St. Therese
Parish,
22 sent to the Servants of the Paraclete and would not be
23 allowed to continue ministry in the Archidocese and that
24 notice, then, was directed to the chancellor to be
25 communicated to the Archbishop Flahiff, so that he
might
Page 624
1 have knowledge of that.
2 Q. And my next question is, given this letter and
3 the date that you feel Father Sigler was returned to the
4 Servants of the Paraclete in March of 1981, when do you
5 think the report was made to you or you learned that he
6 had sexually molested boys in the St. Therese Parish?
7 A. It says by Father Starkey, "a few days ago."
8 The report must have come in perhaps within a week of
that
9 time, because the action was taken immediately upon
10 receipt of knowledge. The pastor received information in
11 preparing for a wedding, it seems this way, and he
12 immediately called me and met with me and with
Father
13 Sigler that same day that he called.
14 Father Sigler admitted the allegation, and I asked
15 him to be packed and gone by the next morning from the
16 parish, that he would not have permission to celebrate
17 Mass for the community at all and needed to return to
the
18 Servants of the Paraclete immediately.
19 So I would imagine that from the time of the
20 allegation to the time that this letter was written, no
21 more than a week had transpired.
22 Q. And I believe you testified that you learned
23 that, in your recollection, four to five boys had been
24 sexually molested by Jason Sigler while at St. Therese
25 Parish?
Page 625
1 A. I learned this from the testimony given by
2 Father Ted Hunt in his deposition. I did not recall what
3 had actually occurred. But his deposition was able to
4 bring back to memory some general lines of the
procedure
5 that had taken place at that time.
6 He indicated that we had spoken about -- after we had
7 confronted Father, that we had spoken together about the
8 incident and that I had said to him, "Find out if there
9 are any other victims." I would not have had any reason
10 to say that to him unless he had said something in our
11 discussion regarding that possibility. And the reason I
12 state that is because Father Hunt had completed studies
in
13 sexual abuse and was familiar with the knowledge that
was
14 available at that time and may have suggested to me
that
15 possibility.
16 And I then directed him, "Well, then find out if
17 there are any other victims or possible victims that may
18 be there."
19 Q. And you did find that out?
20 A. Father Hunt testified that, in his deposition,
21 that he, in fact, did receive a list of four or five
22 names -- I don't recall -- from Father Sigler and that he
23 made it a point, then, to personally visit those families
24 to see what the situation really was.
25 Q. And he told you that there were other victims at
Page 626
1 that time?
2 A. Who told me?
3 Q. Father Hunt.
4 A. Father Hunt informed me that he had a list, that
5 Father Sigler had given him some names, and that he had
6 made a list of these names, and that he was going to visit
7 each one of those families personally.
8 Q. And I believe you testified yesterday that in
9 your best recollection that list contained the names of
10 four or five boys that Father Sigler had molested?
11 A. That is what I understand from the deposition of
12 Father Hunt.
13 Q. Is that what you understand from your memory?
14 A. My memory is very vague on those details, and I
15 could not personally testify that that is my recollection.
16 But that information was before me upon reading of the
17 deposition of Father Hunt.
18 Q. Do you recall now, as we sit here today, Father
19 Hunt telling you there were other victims?
20 A. No, I do not recall Father Hunt telling me that
21 there were other victims.
22 Q. Do you have any reason to doubt that Father
23 Hunt's deposition testimony that there were other
victims
24 of Father Sigler at St. Therese Parish was false?
25 A. I have no reason to doubt the testimony of
Page 627
1 Father Hunt. I would have to assume that what testimony
2 he gave was from his recollection, and I would have to
3 assume the recollection was accurate.
4 Q. And would you also assume that if that
5 recollection was accurate and you were told about other
6 victims, then you would also have known in 1981 that
7 Father Sigler had molested other boys at St. Therese
8 Parish?
9 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Objection, requests
10 speculation from the witness.
11 A. Father Hunt, if he, in fact, had told me that he
12 had these names of these boys -- and this is what he
13 testified to -- that there had been other possible
14 victims, and that he was going to interview the families,
15 then I would have had that information at that time, if
16 that, in fact, had occurred.
17 Q. You have no reason to believe that that didn't
18 occur, did you?
19 A. I have no recollection of it, but I feel that I
20 should trust the testimony of Father Hunt.
21 Q. What were the details of the sexual molestation
22 that came to your attention at that time?
23 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Are we talking about the --
24 MR. BENNETT: Talking about the physical
25 sexual acts that were performed on these young boys,
the
Page 628
1 ones you know about.
2 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Which young boys? The
3 ones that Father Hunt first brought to the Archbishop or
4 the ones that Father Hunt found out later?
5 Q. Any of them. You can tell me which is which.
6 A. As I have just mentioned, I do not recall the
7 details of that discussion. I do not recall the details
8 of what actions had actually transpired between Father
9 Jason Sigler and the children, or whoever was named.
10 I would also think that at that time, the language
11 that would have been used would have been a general
12 reference to perhaps sexual molesting, rather than a
13 graphic description which we're accustomed to today.
But
14 I do not have any recollection of him describing what
had
15 actually transpired.
16 Q. Did you feel it was pretty serious, whatever it
17 was?
18 A. It must have been serious enough for me, because
19 I took immediate action that night upon hearing this and
20 upon hearing the confession -- by confession, I mean
that
21 he admitted to the allegation -- I told him that he
22 immediately was suspended from the Archidocese. He
had no
23 faculties. He could not celebrate Mass the next morning,
24 and he had to leave immediately and return to the
Servants
25 of the Paraclete.
Page 629
1 MR. BENNETT: We can stop here.
2 THE WITNESS: Okay.
3 MR. GOFFE: The time is 11:37. We will go
4 off the record to change tapes. This is the end of tape 9
5 in the deposition of Archbishop Sanchez.
6 [A recess was taken.]
7 MR. GOFFE: The time is 11:45, and we are
8 back on the record with the beginning of tape number 10
in
9 the deposition of Archbishop Sanchez.
10 MR. BENNETT: At this time, I would like to
11 request of the defense a copy of Father Ted Hunt's
12 deposition transcript. That's now relevant in these
13 proceedings, because the Archbishop has referred to that
14 transcript as, in part, that he's relying on to
15 reconstruct his testimony -- or his memory concerning
his
16 testimony, and this document has been withheld from us
by
17 the defense in a discovery request that we had made.
We
18 have filed a motion to compel with the Court. I feel this
19 document is now relevant.
20 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Are you addressing that
21 to me, Mr. Bennett?
22 MR. BENNETT: No, I'm addressing it to the
23 young lady sitting behind you.
24 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Because there are many
25 Defendants in this case. You've sued a passle of people.
Page 630
1 MR. BENNETT: And I would now request that
2 if you have it, you now tender that document to me, so I
3 can properly question the Archbishop, and it will save
4 time and further inquiry in the future.
5 MS. KENNEDY: First of all, Mr. Bennett, I
6 do not have it with me. Second of all, perhaps you are
7 unaware, but I think you might be aware, of the fact that
8 there is a six-page Court order, which by its terms
9 prohibits me or any other party from releasing any
10 deposition testimony or any discovery documents absent
11 Court order.
12 You, sir, to my knowledge have not attempted to
13 have that order lifted; and in the absence of the lifting
14 of that order, I am bound by it.
15 MR. BENNETT: The objection that you have
16 given us in our cases in which we filed the discovery
17 request was that this sort of document was not relevant.
18 MS. KENNEDY: Well, certainly --
19 MR. BENNETT: And I believe that it is now
20 relevant, and there are no grounds for withholding it.
21 MS. KENNEDY: Well, I don't have it with me
22 here. We're clearly not in my office.
23 MR. BENNETT: All right.
24 Q. (By Mr. Bennett) Archbishop, I'm going to show
25 you now --
Page 631
1 MS. KENNEDY: And just for the record is
2 straight, I'm not waiving any of the other objections we
3 have. I just wanted to alert you to the fact that there
4 is a pending Court order.
5 Q. (By Mr. Bennett) I'm going to refer you now to
6 Exhibit 12-FF, which we've talked about briefly before,
7 the letter dated February 21, 1979, to you, signed by
8 Father Gregory McCormick, House Director of the
Servants
9 of the Paraclete, and I want to direct your attention to
10 the second paragraph of that letter which indicates that
11 Father McCormick had lived with Jason Sigler several
times
12 over the previous five years; do you see that sentence?
13 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Let us review the
14 document for a moment --
15 MR. BENNETT: Certainly.
16 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: -- Mr. Tinkler, if you
17 don't mind. Thank you.
18 MR. BENNETT: I'm not Mr. Tinkler.
19 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Mr. Bennett, I'm sorry.
20 I apologize once again. I've got a bad block, you're
21 right, Archbishop. I apologize to you, Mr. Bennett.
22 A. Excuse me, what is the question about the
23 letter?
24 Q. The question is, have you found that sentence
25 that makes reference to the fact that Father McNamara
had
Page 632
1 lived with Jason Sigler on several occasions over the past
2 previous five years?
3 A. Just a correction for the report. It was not
4 Father McNamara, but Father Gregory McCormick.
5 Q. Excuse me, Father McCormick.
6 A. Yes, in his letter of the second paragraph, he
7 says that, "Having lived with him at many months at
8 various times during the past five years," etc., etc.
9 I don't know to what he is referring. Obviously,
10 Father was sent to the Servants of the Paraclete in 1978.
11 I would have to see if it was Spring or what month that
12 was in which he was sent there. I believe it was
sometime
13 in the Spring, maybe March of '78, and was there until
at
14 least October, November, December, sometime in there,
and
15 actually later, because his appointment takes place the
16 following July.
17-25 (DELETED)
Page 634
1-5 (DELETED)
6 A. Sir, if I can respond?
7 Q. Yes, please.
8 A. Okay. That phrase did not catch my eye. But if
9 we want to discuss it, I'd be happy to let you know why I
10 don't think it's an accurate statement on his part, "for
11 the last five years."
12 In September of '74, Father Jason Sigler left the
13 Archidocese of Santa Fe. He was returning to care for
his
14 ill parents in Michigan. He was gone until '76. Upon his
15 return in '76, he had asked for an assignment in the
16 Archidocese. We've discussed it. He was assigned to a
17 parish in Las Vegas, New Mexico, where he remained
until
18 1978.
19 So for those four, four and a half years, he was not
20 with the Servants of the Paraclete in any way. So I'm
not
21 certain how accurate that statement is by Father
Gregory
22 McCormick. It just -- it seems to not have the time
23 element for him. And even in 1974, those first months,
24 before I became the Archbishop, Father Sigler, it
appears,
25 was administrator at Fort Sumner in New Mexico, and
so was
Page 635
1 not with the Servants of the Paraclete. So I just don't
2 understand that phrase that he used in his letter.
3 Q. So in -- please correct me if I'm wrong --
4 A. Surely.
5 Q. -- in February of 1979, therefore, you did not
6 call Father McCormick and make inquiry as to what he
7 meant?
8 A. No. That wasn't the main thrust of the letter
9 that I saw. The main thrust was these other statements
10 that he was making. I had not requested any letter from
11 Father McCormick. Why he chose to right the letter,
that
12 was fine. But he was not the superior of a program;
13 Father McNamara was. But he wrote it on behalf of
Father
14 Jason Sigler, apparently.
15 Q. And my question is: Did you call Father
16 McCormick to find out what he meant by that sentence?
17 A. No, sir.
18 MS. KENNEDY: Objection, asked and
19 answered.
20 A. I do not recall calling Father McCormick about
21 that sentence or about the letter.
22 Q. Thank you.
23 A. No, I'm sorry.
24 Q. That's all right.
25 MR. KONRAD: Did you read the personnel
Page 636
1 files?
2 Q. Mr. Konrad has offered a question to you,
3 Archbishop. At that time, in February of 1979, did you
4 review Jason Sigler's personnel file at the Archidocese
5 office?
6 MS. KENNEDY: Objection, asked and
7 answered.
8 A. No, sir, I didn't.
9 MR. BENNETT: And Ms. Kennedy, again, you
10 have a continuing objection, okay? So you don't need to
11 interrupt the Archbishop. Go ahead, Archbishop.
12 A. No, sir, I do not recall reviewing that.
13 Q. The letter, 12-HH, the letter to the Archbishop
14 of Winnipeg from Chancellor Starkey, did you direct
15 Chancellor Starkey to write that letter?
16 A. I directed him to inform the Archbishop of
17 Father Jason Sigler, who was the Cardinal Flahiff, that
18 Father Jason Sigler had been sent to the Servants of the
19 Paraclete and that his ministry in the Archidocese of
20 Santa Fe was terminated.
21 Q. And Exhibit 12 -- actually, it's pages 12-II and
22 JJ of Exhibit 12 is a letter dated April 2nd, 1981, from
23 the Archbishop of Winnipeg, addressed to you. Do you
24 recall receiving that letter after that date?
25 MS. BURTRAM: Mr. Bennett, I'm sorry, what
Page 637
1 was the date?
2 MR. BENNETT: April the 2nd, 1981.
3 THE WITNESS: '81.
4 MS. BURTRAM: Thank you.
5 Q. (By Mr. Bennett) Have you reviewed that letter?
6 A. Yes, sir.
7 Q. Do you recall receiving it?
8 A. I don't recall receiving it, but I did receive
9 it. He had sent it to me.
10 Q. And in that letter, he refers to similar
11 problems Jason Sigler had in the Archidocese of
Lansing;
12 isn't that right?
13 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: That misstates the
14 letter.
15 A. I don't think he mentions anything in reference
16 to Lansing. It refers to "'the same trouble' as on a
17 previous occasion when Father Sigler had gone to Via
18 Coeli."
19 Q. At that time, were you aware that Father Sigler
20 had gone to Via Coeli at the Servants of the Paraclete
on
21 a previous occasion, other than 1978?
22 A. I was not aware of it until that occasion.
23 Q. Until you received this letter?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And at that time, did you review Jason Sigler's
Page 638
1 personnel file at your Archidocese offices?
2 A. I do not recall reviewing the personnel file,
3 but this letter brought to my attention that Father Jason
4 Sigler had apparently been at Via Coeli previously with
5 this type of allegation for which he was sent there in
6 April of 1981.
7 Q. So you learned through a letter from the
8 Archidocese of Winnipeg, the Archbishop there, in April
of
9 1981, that Jason Sigler had been to the Servants of the
10 Paraclete on a prior occasion for molesting children?
11 A. Yes, sir.
12 Q. Did you make any inquiry of anyone at that time
13 to determine when and where Jason Sigler had molested
14 children on a prior occasion?
15 A. I do not recall making any direct inquiries. I
16 think my concern at that time was that Jason Sigler had,
17 in fact, abused children at St. Therese Parish in
18 Albuquerque. Our confrontation was in reference to that
19 incident. My concern was that he return to the Servants
20 of the Paraclete and that he be properly informed, and
his
21 superior, as well, that he would never again have
ministry
22 in the Archidocese of Santa Fe. To remove the
perpetrator
23 of the crime was uppermost in my mind.
24 Q. And you also knew that he had done it before,
25 but you didn't know when or where?
Page 639
1 A. I did not know when or where. The reference was
2 couched in the language of Archbishop Flahiff. I think my
3 whole focus and my emotion at that time was wrapped up
in
4 having discovered this terrible offense against children
5 and having to remove this man and tell him that he would
6 never again minister in our Archidocese and to inform his
7 ordinary, his bishop, of the same news.
8 Q. But you also knew in April of 1981 that this was
9 not an isolated incident, that he had a history of this
10 type of conduct?
11 A. The Archbishop is referring to some other
12 occasion, yes.
13 Q. And that came to your knowledge in April of
14 1981?
15 A. In this letter.
16 Q. And knowing that Jason Sigler had a history of
17 molesting children, why did you not pull out his
personnel
18 file and look at it?
19 A. I simply did not have any interest in Jason
20 Sigler at that time. I felt that I had done what was
21 necessary to remove him from any potential offense
against
22 other children; and the situation, in my mind, was
closed
23 as far as the Archidocese was concerned. He would
never
24 have an opportunity to serve there again, and that action
25 was taken quickly and decisively, and I felt that was the
Page 640
1 best thing that I could do.
2 Q. And in April of 1981, knowing that Jason Sigler
3 had a history of molesting children, why did you not go
4 back to each of the parishes in the Archidocese of
5 Santa Fe in which he had served as a parish priest and
6 alert the parishioners that he was a child molester with a
7 history of child abuse?
8 A. Sir, as I testified yesterday to similar
9 questions, this was not a practice in the Archidocese of
10 Santa Fe or in the Church. It was not something that we
11 were familiar with about multiple types of victims that a
12 person may have. I did not feel -- was not aware that it
13 would be wise to be able to return to wherever the man
had
14 served and make any public announcements. I believe
15 yesterday I gave reasons for that, and I stand by that.
16 Q. And yet you had told Father Ted Hunt to inquire,
17 to get a list of the children that Jason Sigler had
18 molested at St. Therese Parish and make inquiry among
the
19 parishioners involved to determine whether or not such
had
20 occurred; isn't that right?
21 A. The truth of the matter is that Father Hunt and
22 I discussed the incident; and as a result of the
23 discussion, it was decided to be a prudent thing or a
wise
24 thing to do to ask Father Sigler if there were, in fact,
25 any other children involved.
Page 641
1 Q. Why?
2 A. I think Father Hunt must have instructed me
3 about that, because he himself was, as I said, a man who
4 had gone through studies in psychology and had been
5 informed about, as much as possible about these cases.
He
6 then questioned Father Sigler, as I understand it, the
7 following day.
8 Q. Why was it important to locate other children
9 that he might have abused at St. Therese Parish?
10 A. So that Father Hunt, as pastor, would be able to
11 go and visit with any person of that nature who had
12 possibly -- any child who may have possibly been
offended,
13 to visit with their parents to show the concern of the
14 Church, which we have always had for children, and to
be
15 able to help them in any way if, in fact, they had been
16 violated.
17 Q. And to help those children who had been
18 molested; isn't that right?
19 A. Of course. That's the help that I'm talking
20 about.
21 Q. If that was your concern, to help children that
22 Father Sigler had molested in the parish of St. Therese,
23 why did that concern not extend to children that he may
24 have molested in parishes at which he had served
25 previously?
Page 642
1 A. Apparently -- and I use that word,
2 "apparently" -- the difference in my mind was the fact
3 that we had names given to us by Father Jason Sigler
which
4 was tantamount to potential allegations so that Father
5 could talk to these parents discreetly and yet openly with
6 the parents in their homes to speak to them about this.
7 And in other cases, I had heard no -- of no other
8 allegations against Father Sigler from any parish through
9 the years that he had served with us, and even during the
10 years when he was absent from the Archidocese.
Nothing
11 had come to our attention.
12 Q. But you asked Father Sigler to give you names?
13 A. I did not ask Father Sigler to give us names.
14 Father Hunt, the pastor, asked Father Sigler for names.
15 Q. With your blessing?
16 A. If there were any. Yes, with my blessing. We
17 had discussed it.
18 Q. And with your blessing, why did you not
19 institute an inquiry or ask Jason Sigler who he may have
20 molested in other parishes?
21 MS. KENNEDY: Same objection.
22 A. I simply did not ask Father Sigler if there had
23 been any other potential victims, because I had never
24 heard of any other potential victims. It did not occur to
25 me to ask him this. I had asked Father Hunt to speak
with
Page 643
1 him. He gave him names of St. Therese. He didn't give
2 him names from any other place. If Father Sigler was
3 concerned about the children, if he felt that he wanted to
4 help them, he could have volunteered that information to
5 Father Hunt.
6 Q. Father Sigler raped them. Why would you think
7 that Father Sigler would want to help them?
8 MR. KONRAD: Object to the form of the
9 question. I don't think the evidence is that he raped any
10 Plaintiff.
11 MR. TINKLER: I disagree. You can't give
12 your consent when you're eight years old.
13 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Excuse me one moment,
14 Archbishop, before you answer, Mr. Tinkler, not Mr
15 Bennett, Mr. Tinkler, the Archbishop is trying to answer
a
16 question here. The objection was made, and you
continue
17 with some sub rosa sort of comments to other counsel. If
18 you'd like to hear the Archbishop's response, then we
19 would appreciate it, on our behalf, the courtesy of
20 remaining silent, so that he may concentrate on the
21 question and the answer. He has to wait for the
22 objections and then perhaps answer the questions. But as
23 I've suggested, your sub rosa comments to those
objections
24 interrupt his chain of thought and, I might add, mine, as
25 well. Thank you.
Page 644
1 MR. TINKLER: Would you rather them be at a
2 higher level?
3 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Go ahead, Archbishop,
4 you can answer, unless you'd like the question repeated.
5 THE WITNESS: I think I better get the
6 question again. I apologize, unless you remember it.
7 Q. (By Mr. Bennett) You extended a
8 consideration -- because you knew from Father Hunt that
9 this was an appropriate and reasonable and prudent thing
10 to do, you extended a consideration to other children in
11 the parish of St. Therese that Jason Sigler may have
12 molested; is that a fair statement?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Why did you not extend that same consideration
15 to the children of -- in other parishes within which Jason
16 Sigler had served for a period of time to determine
17 whether or not they had been molested and to provide
them
18 with help and support?
19 MS. KENNEDY: Same objection.
20 A. Sir, as I have repeatedly replied to similar
21 questions, that type of practice simply was not familiar
22 to us. The issue with St. Therese, as you have accurately
23 stated it, was to inquire from the parents whose names,
in
24 fact, had been stated by Father Jason Sigler.
25 It occurs to me that if Father Sigler had said, "No,
Page 645
1 there were no other victims," I'm not certain at this
2 point what we would have done.
3 Q. But you don't know what he would have said; you
4 didn't ask him?
5 A. No. We asked him about if there were additional
6 victims there in St. Therese, and he replied. If Father
7 Sigler were concerned about these additional children, it
8 would seem to me that he would also have been
concerned
9 about any other additional children that may have been
10 victimized.
11 Q. And if you were concerned about other children
12 who may have been victimized, it would seem to me
that you
13 would have asked Father Sigler who they might be?
14 A. I was concerned at that time, sir, about the
15 parish --
16 MS. KENNEDY: Same objection.
17 A. -- about the children in the parish in which he
18 was working, had worked for nearly two years. It simply
19 did not occur to me to question him about other
20 assigments.
21 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: It's past 12:00, Mr.
22 Bennett. Can we break now?
23 MR. BENNETT: We can break now.
24 MR. WINTERBOTTOM: Thank you.
25 MR. GOFFE: The time is 12:11. We will go
Page 646
1 off the record.
2 [The noon recess was taken.]


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