"Interior of St. Andrew's Catholic Church in Roanoke, Virginia" by Joe Ravi / CC BY-SA 3.0

Class-Action Lawsuit: The Catholic Church Is Hoarding Donations to Charity

Feb 4, 2020

By Hemant Mehta

David O’Connell, a Rhode Island native, is suing the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) for what he’s calling charity fraud. The USCCB has long promoted its Peter’s Pence charity to help people affected by “war, oppression, natural disaster or disease.”

But O’Connell, a donor to that charity, says as little as 10% of the donations to the organization are actually funding the people who need it. A recent Wall Street Journal article said “two-thirds of the money has been used to help cover the budget deficit at the Holy See.”

That’s why O’Connell is looking for other plaintiffs in his class-action lawsuit:

On behalf of himself and everyone else in Rhode Island and the United States, he now asks USCCB to come clean. Having collected hundreds of millions of dollars from the faithful and well-meaning donors for the poor in immediate need of assistance, USCCB must now account for itself and the money with which it was entrusted, and, in the interests of justice, it must disgorge the funds that were not spent as it promised.

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