Bishop Carl A. Kemme fully embraces recent measures taken by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops as a result of the recent sexual abuse revelations.
“As a bishop, with the duty to protect and to heal, I fully support the steps being proposed by the Administrative Committee of the USCCB as well as the intentions of the bishops to enter into a period of penance and purification as we address the current crisis in leadership in the church.”
The committee has invited all bishops to join in acts of prayer and penance, stating: “This is a time of deep examination of conscience for each bishop. We cannot content ourselves that our response to sexual assault within the church has been sufficient. Scripture must be our guide forward, “be doers of the word and not hearers only.” (James 1:22)
Bishop Kemme adds: “In all of this, we do not want anyone – ourselves included – to lose sight of those who have suffered from those who have acted or failed to act as the Gospel demanded. For survivors of sexual abuse, these days may re-open deep wounds. Support is available from the church and within the community. Victims Assistance Coordinators are available in every diocese to help you find resources. We are grateful to hundreds of dedicated people who, since the adoption of the 2002 Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, have been working with the church to support survivors and prevent future abuse.”
The Administrative Committee took the following actions regarding the matter:
1. Approved the establishment of a third-party reporting system that will receive confidentially, by phone and online, complaints of sexual abuse of minors by a bishop and sexual harassment of or sexual misconduct with adults by a bishop and will direct those complaints to the appropriate ecclesiastical authority and, as required by applicable law, to civil authorities.
2. Instructed the USCCB Committee on Canonical Affairs and Church Governance to develop proposals for policies addressing restrictions on bishops who were removed or resigned because of allegations of sexual abuse of minors or sexual harassment of or misconduct with adults, including seminarians and priests.
3. Initiated the process of developing a Code of Conduct for bishops regarding the sexual abuse of a minor; sexual harassment of or sexual misconduct with an adult; or negligence in the exercise of his office related to such cases.
4. Supported a full investigation into the situation surrounding Archbishop McCarrick, including his alleged assaults on minors, priests, and seminarians, as well any responses made to those allegations. Such an investigation should rely upon lay experts in relevant fields, such as law enforcement and social services.

Need to report a child safety issue?
To report any suspicion of child abuse or neglect, call the Kansas Department for Children and Families at 1-800-922-5330. If a child is in immediate danger, call 911. To report suspected abuse to the Diocese of Wichita, call Therese Seiler at 316-269-3945. You are encouraged to make contact with one, or all, of these entities if you suspect the abuse of a child.