It is about time. This week Bishop Robert Finn of Kansas City was indicted for failing to report pornographic pictures he knew priests under his supervision had taken of young girls.
He knew about the pictures in December of last year and failed to report them until May. During that time one priest continued to take lewd pictures of at least one young girl.
For years I have covered stories of abuse by priests. In so many cases there is the issue of what the church hierarchy knew and to what degree they protected their own.
Yes, the Catholic Church has paid out millions to settle lawsuits. Yes, they have agreed to policies, including in the Kansas City diocese, to immediately report abuse. But this case clearly shows the church has overlooked these agreements and continued to follow a path of shielding and even enabling criminal behavior.
Bishop Finn has only been charged with a misdemeanor. But it is a criminal charge. Victims groups are hailing this as a breakthrough. And perhaps, this will lead to a change in the culture within the church that has perpetuated a cycle of secrecy and abuse. It is about time.