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Canisius College President On Diocese Priest Issue

Canisius College President John Hurley is following up on his letter from August which called for more transparency in the priest sex abuse scandal affecting the Buffalo Diocese and Bishop Richard Malone.

BUFFALO, NY - Canisius College President John Hurley Canisus College President John Hurley has been critical of the bishop's handling of the sex abuse crisis for months now. He spoke with 2 On Your Side about the challenges going forward.

2 On Your Side asked Hurley what recommendations he would have for lay people in the church following the revelations surrounding the abuse scandal which aired Sunday night on the CBS '60 Minutes' program.

These are excerpts of his response.

"My sense is that a number of committed Catholics, and I know this because people have been contacting me, but a number of committed Catholics are very frustrated...because they don't know what to do."

Hurley added, "The church is not the clergy. The church is not the buildings. The church is the people of God. So we as Catholics have to see ourselves as the Church. And when we have a problem in the church we have a right to participate in the solutions. We can't wait for those solutions to be developed.

This cries out for the laity to step forward for the position of women to be re-examined in the church and to be enhanced. And for us to work together to rebuild trust and confidence. And this comes really from a place of love. I'm talking about committed Catholics, not Catholics are casual about their faith. People who love the church and are heavily invested in the ministries of the church here in the Diocese. These are people who are disillusioned. And if the church loses these people, that's a real problem."

We asked where do you think this will go? Hurley said, "Well...I don't want to speculate on what the Bishop may or may not do. That's really a decision that the Bishop needs to make. There have been dioceses that have actually undergone...gone through bankruptcy. And their assets have been subject to the supervision of a court and as they've developed the plan of re-organization for the Diocese, under that court supervision, they've had to put things in place. So there are models to look at here in Buffalo thar we ought to think about...do we have best practices to ensure accountability and to ensure the best management."

More: Petition asks Buffalo Bishop Malone to release names of all Catholic priests accused of abuse

More: WNY priest says Bishop Malone not effective in role

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