In the wake of the recent movie Spotlight, which told the story of the
child sexual abuse scandal in the Archdiocese of Boston, the Concord Monitor
set out to recount how the clergy sexual abuse scandal was addressed over
10 years ago in New Hampshire. The Monitor inked a three part series this
week, which described the role that Shaheen & Gordon, P.A. partner,
Jim Rosenberg, played in the case when he was a prosecutor with the Attorney General’s office.
In 2003, The State of New Hampshire reached a historic agreement with the
Diocese of Manchester, whereby the Diocese admitted to its own institutional
responsibility for endangering the welfare of children and agreed to the
disclosure of over 9,000 pages of material from its Secret Archive, exposing
the Diocese’s failure to protect children from sexually abusive
clergy. The Diocese also submitted to audits of its own training and process
for reporting new allegations of sexual abuse. At the time, New Hampshire
was the fourth most Catholic state in the nation.
“I grew up in this community, and I knew the meaningful and significant
role the church played here, through school and elsewhere,” said
Rosenberg in an interview. “But we were beginning to deal with victims
who’d been terribly harmed and whose lives had been shaped or reshaped
by sexual abuse at the hands of priests and compounded by the fact that
the diocese didn’t react in real time at all. It was a very difficult
and emotional balancing act for us.”
Victims still come forward every year to tell their stories.
We at Shaheen & Gordon, P.A. are grateful to the Concord Monitor for
shining light anew on this painful chapter in our state’s history
and credit our partner, Jim Rosenberg, for pouring energy and effort into
the prosecution of this case over a decade ago.
To learn more, please visit the Concord Monitor online to read “A Boston scandal, uncovered by the Globe, spreads north” and “After months of digging, investigators uncover church abuse, then turn
up the heat.”