Bishop Jaime Soto issues statement as independent victim compensation program begins accepting applications

Today in Los Angeles, the lay leaders who administer the Independent Victim Compensation Program (ICP) and its Independent Oversight Committee (IOC) announced that their website was open and that victim-survivors who had been sexually abused by diocesan priests as minors in Sacramento and 5 other California (arch)dioceses could apply for compensation.

The website is Information is available in English, Spanish and Vietnamese.

This is a necessary step to own and atone for the past. It will allow victim-survivors to receive the acknowledgement they deserve and the material help they need as they go through the healing process. It also continues our work to confront the grievous and unconscionable sins committed by individual priests and the failure of the Church hierarchy to protect young people from harm.

Compensation through this program will come from diocesan funds, insurance and self-insurance reserves. No money will come from contributions to the Annual Catholic Appeal, The Catholic Foundation, designated endowments, or parish resources to fund compensation. Whichever fund the money comes from, I acknowledge that everything the Church does is funded by the sacrificial donations of Faithful Catholics.

The other (arch)dioceses taking part in the program are Los Angeles, Fresno, San Bernardino, Orange and San Diego.

Let us always pray for the victims of priestly sexual abuse. The sinful crimes that were committed upon Children of God entrusted to our care are despicable. They have brought tremendous pain to all the Church. They have also caused lasting pain to the innocent young victims. As their pain is ongoing, so must be our prayers.