John Hurley, president of Canisius College and leader of the Movement to Restore Trust in the Diocese of Buffalo, met with Bishop Richard Malone and the joint implementation team Tuesday.

  • The movement was created in Oct. 2018
  • The group recently released a 68-page report to the Diocese
  • Movement not calling for Malone's resignation

"So there are some big tasks on the agenda. We're continuing to meet to talk about them," Hurley.

The group is working on the adult sexual misconduct policy, almost a week after the one year look-back window opened under the Child Victims Act.

"I wondered whether we'd let the dust settle this week but the Bishop wanted to move forward," said Hurley.

That, as more than 100 abuse lawsuits have been filed against the Diocese, followed by key resignations at Christ the King Seminary.

"We expected something on this scale. It's the really pain and suffering of so many that causes us to have a lot of concern too," said Hurley.

Hurley says he's also concerned over whether the Diocese can balance handling the lawsuits against implementing the recommendations made to help reform the Church moving forward — recommendations outlined in a 68-page report the movement had worked on since the 200-member laity group formed last October.

"My concern is how much energy is going to be diverted to contesting the litigation. And how much time do we have and resources do we have to begin the process of reform and renewal," said Hurley.

Hurley says the independent group will continue to work with the Bishop as the two appeared at a listening session last weekend in Dunkirk.

Despite recent criticism, Hurley says the group is still not calling for Malone to resign. 

"I don't know how these things are going to get done if we don't work with the Bishop. So if he's not going to resign then we need to move forward because we can't wait until he retires to begin doing some of these things that we're trying to do," said Hurley.

Hurley adds should the Diocese decide to declare bankruptcy, the group's work would still continue.