Yesterday, Orange County Superior Court Judge Lance Jensen sentenced Luis Eduardo Ramirez, an Augustinian who was serving at Our Lady of the Pillar Catholic Church in SanTana, to 180 days in jail for attempting to molest a 17-year-old boy in an Anaheim motel. Ramirez plead guilty to taking the parishioner to the hotel, putting his head in his lap, and reaching up his shirt. This admission did not stop parishioners from getting angry at the conviction.
"When the judge announced his decision, two burst out sobbing," wrote Orange County Register writer Rachanee Srisavasdi. "One supporter had to be dragged outside, his face red with anger. 'He's a good man,' said another parishioner, Leonardo Cortez. 'These are lies.' Ramirez's attorney, Gary Pohlson, presented more than 2,000 parishioner letters to Jensen in an attempt at leniency.
Letters, angry Mexicans, an admitting molester--where have we heard this story before? Oh, yes: Gerardo Tanilong!
My very first encounter as a reporter with the Diocese of Orange sex-abuse scandal was covering a protest that sex-abuse survivors held outside Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in SanTana's Delhi barrio, probably the most Mexican church in Orange County (this is the type of place where Jesus gets a small crucifix but the Virgen de Guadalupe notches a massive portrait front and center behind the altar). Our Lady of Guadalupe parishioners spat at the protesters, yelled at them, and even pushed one down to the pavement--all of this despite Tanilong admitting to fondling a 15-year-old girl in the back seat of a truck while her parents were in the front. Even at Tanilong's sentencing, parishioners still insisted it was all a cover-up: one older lady who looked like a fatter version of my dad's cousin Chole insisted police beat a confession out of the Filipino priest.
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Mexican Catholics don't compare to the pedo-spinning of the Mater Dei clan, but they're close. In Spanish:
Nosotros mexicanos tenemos que parar de ser las ovejas del Diócesis de Orange, del idiota obispo Tod D. Brown. Hay que mantener nuestra fe católica, pero hay que mandar nuestros mentirosos líderes católicos a la chingada.
In English: Stop being sheep, wabs.
More to come on this story, but needed to go on a rant against my people...