LGBTQ Magazine

Recommending Laura Bassett's Haunting Article "Buried in Baltimore: The Mysterious Murder of a Nun Who Knew Too Much"

Posted on the 15 May 2015 by William Lindsey @wdlindsy
Recommending Laura Bassett's Haunting Article
If you have not read Laura Bassett's Huffington Post article "Buried in Baltimore: The Mysterious Murder of a Nun Who Knew Too Much," I highly encourage you to do so. It's not easy reading, and you may not be able to shake the essay, having read it.
But necessary reading for those trying to wrap their minds around the abuse situation in the Catholic church, to come to terms with the depths of corruption from which the abuse and its cover-up emanate, and to understand why it was that, for such a very long time, Catholic institutions implicated in abuse were able to evade the law and media coverage.
Bassett tells the story of the never-solved murder of Sister Catherine Cesnik of Baltimore in 1969, and the intersecting story of Father Joseph Maskell, chaplain of the all-girls school, Archbishop Keough, at which Cesnik taught. An excerpt:
Former Keough students said Maskell used his charm, psychology training and moral authority to first disarm the young girls, then to manipulate them into sexual relationships. He targeted struggling or badly behaved students — [Gemma] Hoskins and [Abbie] Schaub, who got straight As, said he never bothered them -- asking the girls if they were having problems at home, or if they had been sexually active with their boyfriends or used drugs. Sometimes the priest used repetitive phrases -- "I only want what's best for you, just what’s best for you," one woman recalled him saying -- to coax them into talking.

The women [who have alleged as adults that Maskell raped them at Archbishop Keough] recall that Maskell had a gynecologist friend, Dr. Richter, who would examine them to make sure they weren’t pregnant. [Teresa] Lancaster claims Maskell took her to see Richter for a pregnancy test and then raped her on the table while Richter performed a breast exam. 

And then Sister Cathy began to ask questions of some of the girls in the school about whether Maskell and his colleague Father Neil Magnus (the two masturbated in front of student Jean Wehner in "spiritual healing" sessions they conducted together, she alleges) were harming them. And not long after she began to ask those questions, her body was found at a dump site outside Baltimore with choke marks around her neck and a hole in the back of her skull where she had been hit with a blunt object.
As I say, not easy reading, and nothing in me delights in recommending it to you. But necessary reading, if only to remind us of the depths of corruption that can find a comfortable place in the bowels of human communities including faith communities, despite the belief of some people in one culture after another that religious people and religious groups are incapable of such corruption. 
Basset has done her homework and tells her story extremely well. This is an essay that deserves very wide reading and wide circulation.
The photo of coverage of Sister Catherine Cesnik's disappearance by Baltimore papers is by Laura Bassett.

You Might Also Like :

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog

These articles might interest you :

  • Hue Are You? with Kim Hoegger

    You? with Hoegger

    Welcome to HUE ARE YOU? A weekly blog series exploring different creatives' views on color and its use in interiors, art and design. We will dive deep into thei... Read more

    The 20 April 2018 by   Bridgetbeari
  • 10 Strategies For Rebounding From Startup Failures

    Strategies Rebounding From Startup Failures

    If you can’t deal with failure, then the entrepreneur lifestyle is not for you. Don’t believe that urban myth that all you need is a good idea, a little fun... Read more

    The 20 April 2018 by   Martin Zwilling
  • Lance Armstrong Settles $100 Million Lawsuit with Federal Government

    Lance Armstrong Settles $100 Million Lawsuit with Federal Government

    Yesterday, former pro cyclist and Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong put to rest the final lawsuit that has been dogging him since he admitted to doping... Read more

    The 20 April 2018 by   Kungfujedi
  • Actor Matt McGorry Does Some Serious Ally Work

    Actor Matt McGorry Does Some Serious Ally Work

    If you’ve watched How To Get Away With Murder or Orange is the New Black, you’ve seen the work of actor Matt McGorry. If you follow him on Facebook you saw him... Read more

    The 20 April 2018 by   Danceswithfat
  • Trio of Climbers Make First Ascent of Jeannette Peak in Canada

    Trio Climbers Make First Ascent Jeannette Peak Canada

    The news of this story broke a week or so back while I was on the road, and it got lost in my email box until now. Still, it is a good story and I thought it wa... Read more

    The 20 April 2018 by   Kungfujedi
  • Teach Anywhere

    Teach Anywhere

    Teach anywhere one of the best recruitment companies for teachers in the UAE. The Dubai City Company would like to review this company. With this in mind, this... Read more

    The 20 April 2018 by   Dubai City Company
  • Khost - Governance

    Khost Governance

    U.K. duo khost released their third full-length album titled Governance in June of 2017.What Damian Bennett and Andy Swan have created is a nightmarish... Read more

    The 20 April 2018 by   Ripplemusic