WASHINGTON –– More than half of the $1.8 million cost for the nearly 150-page report by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice on the “causes and context” of child sex abuse by clergy came from the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

The USCCB spent $918,000 and other organizations and individuals an additional $914,893 for the report, commissioned by the all-lay National Review Board in November 2005.

Mandated by the bishops’ 2002 “Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People,” the report was released May 18 in Washington.

It said potential sexual abusers of minors cannot be pinpointed through “identifiable psychological characteristics” and there is “no single identifiable ’cause’ of sexually abusive behavior toward minors.” Because of that, it encouraged steps to deny abusers “the opportunity to abuse” by limiting the “situational factors” associated with it.

In an acknowledgments page, the John Jay researchers thanked “the funding agencies that supported this study,” including the National Institute of Justice, a branch of the U.S. Department of Justice that gave John Jay a grant of $283,651, and the Knights of Columbus, which contributed $250,000.

Other donations, ranging from $100,000 to $1,000, came from foundations that included the Raskob Foundation, Catholic Mutual Group, Sisters of Charity Ministry Foundation, Luce Foundation, Greater Cincinnati Foundation, Assisi Foundation of Memphis and Daughters of Charity Foundation/Province of the West; and health-related organizations such as the Catholic Health Association of the United States and St. Joseph Health System in Orange, Calif.

There also was a $100,000 anonymous donation and donations totaling $242 from individual members of Voice of the Faithful.

The “causes and context” report was the second completed by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, part of the City University of New York, on the sexual abuse of minors by Catholic priests. The first, a study of the nature and scope of the problem, was published in February 2004.

The information collected in the nature and scope study “shaped the investigation of the present study and served as a resource to verify results,” the John Jay researchers said.

They also listed as among the “primary data sources” for the latest report:

  • “Longitudinal analyses of data sets of various types of social behavior,” such as crime, divorce and premarital sex.
  • Analysis of seminary attendance, the development of seminary curriculum for human formation and information from seminary leaders.
  • Interviews with and surveys of inactive priests with allegations of abuse, and a comparison sample of active priests who were not accused.
  • Data from a 1971 Loyola University study of the psychology of U.S. Catholic priests.
  • Surveys of survivors and victim assistance coordinators and analysis of clinical files about abusive behavior.
  • Surveys of bishops, priests and diocesan leaders about policies put into place after 1985.
  • Analysis of clinical data from three treatment centers where priests who abused minors and priests with other behavioral problems were treated.