A Note To Mark Stokoe
Glory to Jesus Christ!
As you know in the last two and one-half years we have had many conversations in person, and by telephone, but I have never posted a comment on ocanews.org. Now I am obligated to make an exception.
In the comments section of the review of the Indianapolis Town Hall meeting (Editor's note on #9 by Michael Geeza) you described the Metropolitan Council meeting of November, 1999, as well as your report to the Midwest Diocesan Council in January, 2000. Your description brought to vivid recollection an incident which I have tried desperately to forget.
I had been assured by the former Chancellor that the Metropolitan Council had reviewed all information and there was "no problem". In my naivete I believed him.
At the Diocesan council meeting, you brought to our attention a great deal of information - information which now would have raised a hundred red flags for me. It didn't. It was easier to accept the conclusion of the Metropolitan Council and be done with it. It was a done deal. Case closed. Not a concern of our Diocesan Council. I ruled your presentation out of order. Let's move on with business that concerns our diocese.
Mark, I offer this only as an explanation, not as an excuse. I was wrong, dead wrong. The questions that
I raised in 2005 could have been posed five years earlier. Perhaps that could have made a difference.
I am filled with regret and remorse. I have failed the Church. My conscience tells me that I have been more a part of the problem than I would ever want to admit, and I am precluded from being part of the solution.
I had greatly offended you, yet you have always been gracious to me and I am grateful. I am deeply ashamed.
I ask your forgiveness and prayers for my unworthiness.
In Christ's love,