The Archdiocese of Agaña, Guam has announced that it will file for bankruptcy, following mediation efforts in September regarding clerical abuse claims in the country.
Archbishop Michael Byrnes said the bankruptcy declaration “will bring the greatest measure of justice to the greatest number of victims,” allowing them to know “that they’ve been heard and understood,” the Associated Press reported.
Leander James, an attorney working with alleged victims in the country, welcomed the announcement, saying, “Bankruptcy provides the only realistic path to settlement of pending and future claims.”
There are currently $115 million in lawsuits from over 180 abuse claims pending in Guam.
In March, the Archdiocese of Agaña announced plans to sell its chancery property and move offices, as part of a broader move to liquidate and sell archdiocesan property to settle sex abuse cases.
Anthony Perez, another victims’ attorney, explained that the local diocese will not necessarily be forced to close its doors.
Read more at Catholic World Report