Jason Berry Addresses FutureChurch Benefit
Call To Action Cofounders Receive Trivison Award
On October 13th nearly 200 enthusiastic people gathered at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History for FutureChurch’s 21st annual benefit. Investigative journalist, Jason Berry, spoke on his recent book: Render Unto Rome, the Secret Life of Money in the Catholic Church. The FutureChurch mission was profiled in this exhaustively researched exposé that includes two chapters about Cleveland’s double traumas of a financial scandal involving under the table payouts of the diocesan chief financial officer and the subsequent forced closing of fifty parishes, many against the advice of diocesan priests and employees.
A deeply attentive Cleveland crowd heard Berry quote Western Michigan University expert on diocesan financial statements, Professor Jack Ruhl, who critiqued financial reports from the Cleveland diocese: “The Finance Office has been so narrowly defined that financial reports for it exclude ‘troublesome’ accounts like the Property and Casualty Reserve Fund which pays sex abuse claims. They don’t list it. This is not transparent financial reporting. Too much remains hidden.”
A highpoint of the evening was the presentation of the Rev. Louis J. Trivison Award to Call To Action (CTA) cofounders Dan and Sheila Daley. Trivison, who died in 2010, was a cofounder of FutureChurch. Sr. Chris Schenk noted that FutureChurch’s partnership with CTA in the early years made it possible for the organization’s education and advocacy resources to spread across North America. She said: “For thirty years [Dan and Sheila] led with humor, gentleness and a certain savvy wisdom. Their gospel nonviolence created a true culture of reform that will long endure. The U.S. Church and FutureChurch have been greatly blessed by their leadership.”