An astounding report pointed to us today by Deacon Greg. Turns out, that according to Connecticut Magazine, Cardinal Egan isn’t apologizing to victims of sexual abuse any longer.

In an interview in the February issue of Connecticut magazine, a surprisingly frank Cardinal Egan said of the apology, “I never should have said that,” and added, “I don’t think we did anything wrong.”

He said many more things in the interview, some of them seemingly at odds with the facts. He repeatedly denied that any sex abuse had occurred on his watch in Bridgeport. He said that even now, the church in Connecticut had no obligation to report sexual abuse accusations to the authorities. (A law on the books since the 1970s says otherwise.) And he described the Bridgeport diocese’s handling of sex-abuse cases as “incredibly good.”

All of which has Cardinal Egan, now 79 and living in Manhattan, drawing fire from advocates who say he has reopened old wounds.

Something here doesn’t add up. I’m wondering if the Cardinal really said this or if this was out of context. If he really said it, it’s horribly disturbing, especially in light of the recent Vatican conference on the handling of sexual abuse. If he didn’t, it’s horrendous journalism.

If true, it’s also just mean. Imagine anyone coming to you with an abuse allegation and your response being, “Not my problem. We did nothing wrong here.” Obviously SOMETHING went wrong and one should apologize and have some empathy for the victim.

“I’m sorry” goes a long way. Perhaps married men know this better than churchmen do?

If true, it continues to astound me that some folks just don’t get that this was and continues to be the biggest black eye on the church in centuries. How can they expect us to trust them again if they show no remorse and if they continue to place children in harms way by not taking this seriously.

As a colleague said to me, “I find it odd that lay people are the ones who have to tell the clergy that this is wrong and just how wrong it is. How do they not get this?”

With regards to bad journalism, I often wonder how people can sleep at night when they look for the most negative comment and then spin it in a way that can vilify someone. I remember Yankee pitcher Sterling Hitchcock was preparing to pitch against the Red Sox. Someone asked him about the legendary Yankee-Red Sox rivalry.

“Well, I don’t know much about it. Babe Ruth was dead when I was born, so I don’t know.”

He got killed for saying that. But he was being honest and people made him look like a fool who couldn’t care less about the history of the game. I found it horribly unfair. I’m sort of hoping that this is a similar issue of being misunderstood.

It will be interesting to see the response to this in the next few days.