The Keepers, currently streaming on Netflix, documents the heartbreaking and completely shocking accusations about events happening within the walls of Archbishop Keough High School in Baltimore, Maryland during the 1960s and '70s. The seven-part documentary centres around the death of a 26-year-old nun teaching at the school, Sister Cathy Cesnik. From there, the story widens to include the sexual abuse allegations against one Father Joseph Maskell, now deceased, by "Jane Doe," later identified as Jean Wehner. The true crime series has been hailed for its ability to focus on the victims (Sister Cathy's murder is still unsolved, and Wehner patiently waits for justice to be brought to the men she says sexually abused her), instead of merely highlighting the horrific details of the crimes themselves.
Now, nearly a week after its premiere, the series director, Ryan White, hosted a Reddit Ask Me Anything forum (shorthanded as AMA) for invested fans to ask him questions and even potentially spur new leads. And would you believe that the Archdiocese made an appearance to defend the Catholic Church? Because, as E! Online points out, they sure did.
A redditor asked: "Who would you most like to talk to, still living, that you think has information? Either for a follow up interview or a first timer."
White passionately responded: "The Archdiocese!"
He then expanded as to why: "They have internal records on Maskell. I would love for them to be transparent and show the world what they have. I'm especially interested to see the files on the investigation they supposedly did in the 1990's after Jane Doe came forward. Jean's family found dozens of victims just by sending out a letter in the mail, so I'm confused on what this Archdiocese 'investigation' involved."
An hour later, would you guess who came to troll White's AMA? The Archdiocese themselves, under the very obvious username, "ArchBalt," a referenced to the Arch(diocese) of Balt(imore). The talking head for the Catholic Church wrote: "Archdiocesan records related to Maskell are confidential, and Archdiocesan policy and state law would preclude us from disclosing much of the information in them as they include confidential personal information (e.g. names of alleged sexual abuse victims), personnel records, health records, attorney-client communications, personally identifying information (such as social security numbers), etc."
That answer basically means: we can't show you because we want to protect the privacy of other bystanders and church members involved in records related to Maskell. The only thing is, as White points out, they easily could redact this information and provide the documents as an act of good faith. It would show their allegiance to the documentary's cause, as well as their participation in a decades-long sexual abuse investigation.
It's clear who is in the right and who is in the wrong here, and it's just interesting to see these powerful men on Reddit trying to clap back at a citizen trying to do due diligence on a startling and horrific case.