Documents (in PDF format) may be downloaded and printed, or printed directly from the web site. We also can mail documents to you, for the price of handling and shipping. Please contact the office for this service: email email@example.com; telephone 781-559-3360.
Documents are listed alphabetically by category.
Asserting Our Rights: one-page summary of our rights and responsibilities as the People of God
Church Governance: four-page overview of governance and what Pope Francis may reform
Projects & Prospects: VOTF Scorecard for 2015-2016
Rights and Responsibilities of the Laity: four-page coverage of lay rights within the Church
Ten Steps to Reform: steps VOTF members can take to help reform the Church
Why VOTF?: four-page description of how VOTF helps raise voices together
Bishop Selection Primer -- 2-page summary of VOTF model for lay input into bishop selection
Clericalism & Celibacy
A Brief History of Celibacy: a condensed summary, with bibliography
Celibacy: Suggested Readings -- a short bibliography
The Clerical Culture -- three-page description of the culture that feeds sex-abuse and other scandals
Clerical Culture Among Roman Catholic Clergy in the U.S.: overview of the clerical culture with bibliography for additional reading
Crisis in the Priesthood: Conversations About Celibacy with Revs. Richard McBrien and Don Cozzens and Prof. David O'Brien (Study Guide 1 for VOTF DVD "Conversations About Celibacy")
Crisis in the Priesthood: Conversations About Celibacy with Fr. Don Cozzens (Study Guide 2 for VOTF DVD "Conversations About Celibacy")
Mandatory Celibacy: Time to Discuss Its Flaws: an essay by Edward J. Greenan
Canon Law and Diocesan Finance Councils: commentary on the canon laws
Canon Laws on Church Finances: relevant canons from the Code of Canon Law
Currency Counting Form: a template for properly counting cash in the weekly collection baskets
Financial Accountability: one-page summary of initiative to foster financial transparency and accountability at diocesan level
Financial Accountability & Transparency Project: description of VOTF project
Guidelines for Finance Councils: "best practice" guidelines established in Chicago Archdiocese
How to Read a Diocesan Financial Statement: instructions on analyzing what your diocese reports
Parish Financial Security: brochure for publicizing security needs
Using the VOTF Finance Accountability Database: instructions for opening the web-based "window" into records on U.S. diocesan financial reporting
What's Your Parish's F-IQ?: a 10-step yes/no questionnaire to assess your parish's Financial Integrity Quotient, and how secure your weekly parish collections are
Collaborative Study Tips: outline of suggestions for encouraging full participation in a shared learning experience
Parish Read: a simple approach to working within your parish on lay-organized projects; this template focuses on reading a book together
Promise of Vatican II: study guide for 4-week discussion series
Scripture Surprises: essay from Commonweal (2007) on why we study Scripture
Vatican II: Faithful Revolution: study guide for lengthy DVD series (available on Amazon) about the Church council that "opened windows"
Day of Renewal Model: step-by-step details for developing and running a day of renewal for a small group
Emmaus Prayer Service: lay-led prayer service with the theme of an Emmaus Moment
Faith Sharing Groups: outline of steps for organizing a small faith-sharing group
Proposing a Parish Book-Read: template for organizing gatherings
911 Prayer Service: template for a lay-led remembrance service
Vespers of Hope: prepared in collaboration with the Association of U.S. Catholic Priests
Note: Additional prayers and services are available directly on the web site. See the Prayers and Prayer Services page under our Prayerful Voice Program.
Parish Pastoral Council Self Assessment: for PPC members to assess their own operations
Proposal for Independent Judicial Review of a Diocese: would establish administrative tribunals in dioceses to address violations of lay rights (which are codified in 1983 Canon Law)
Proposal for Mutual Visitation as a Mechanism for Renewal: visits among dioceses could encourage renewal and strengthen "fraternal correction" via exposure to operational practices elsewhere
Sample Parish Pastoral Council Documents
Bibliography on reports, essays, books covering sex abuse in the Church, by Fr. Tom Doyle
Government and Academic reports on clergy sex abuse: academic assessments and investigative reports from national and international government commissions.
John Jay Reports (commissioned by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops)
The Nature and Scope Supplementary Data Analysis 2006 (published 2002)
Statutes of Limitations Advocacy Guide -- guidelines for those who wish to work within their states for reform of laws that serve to shield child abusers rather than protect children (22 pages)
U.S. State Legislature and Attorney General Reports
Altoona-Johnstown Diocese: Report of the Thirty-Seventh Statewide Investigating Grand Jury (published 2016)
Boston MA: The Sexual Abuse of Children in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston: A Report by the Attorney General (published 2003)
Manchester NH: Attorney General Investigative Report plus
Link to 2006 Assessment, Appendices, and Exhibits (includes data from the 2002 Agreement)
Kansas City MO: Investigation of the Catholic Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph and
Suffolk County NY: Special Grand Jury Report Report (published 2003)
Capuchin Province of St. Joseph (U.S.), June 2013
Ireland Government Reports
Murphy Report (published shortly after the Ryan Report) covered clergy sex abuse in the Archdiocese of Dublin.
Ryan Report (the name commonly attached to this investigation) was conducted by Ireland's Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse on the abuses committed in Church-run orphanages and industrial schools.
Summary of Report by Commission of Inquiry (published December 2011) [Note that first page in the Summary has a single word on it; text begins on page 2.]
McLellan Commission Report (published August 2015) reports on the safeguarding policies, procedures and practices of the Church in Scotland, at the request of the Bishops' Conference there. The recommendations (beginning on page 66) highlight the need to listen to, support, and find justice for survivors.
Women Deacons: How Long? -- paper on restoring the female diaconate to the Church (15 pages)
Suggested Readings: Women in the Church -- additional resources and information on women's roles (9 pages)