Evaluation of Accusations Against Priests and Religious

We have extensive experience in evaluating accusations against priests, causes of false accusations and in assisting priests in addressing conflicts in those to whom they minister.

The Justice for Priests new publication to help accused priests is an excellent resource.

Manual of Self Defense

Evaluation of Conflicts in Self-Giving

Mistrust Checklist for Priests

Please rate yourself by choosing the appropriate number on the scale below.

0 - Never        1 - Very Little        2 - Moderately Often       3 - Very Often

Behaviors

Limited ability to give oneself to others
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Numerous controlling behaviors
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Excessive financial fears
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Tendency to isolate
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Restlessness and hyperactivity (an absence of feeling safe)
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Inability to show affection (fearful of being vulnerable)
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Difficulty praising others (fearful of allowing anyone to be close)
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Inability to include others in making important decisions
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Flight from committed relationships by excessive work, hobbies, or other interests-including too many religious activities outside of the home
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Few close priest friends
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Compulsive eating
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Excessive drinking or drug usage
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Addiction to pornography (escape to fantasy world)
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Fear of flying, elevators or bridges
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Difficulty in receiving help or advice from others
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
A need to have things his/her own way
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Withdrawal from others in front of TV, books, computer, etc.
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Overly strong dealing with others (caused by fear of being hurt)
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Poor team player
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Pornography use
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often

Thinking

Tendency to worry excessively
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Catastrophic thinking (something bad is going to happen)
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Rigid thinking, a lack of openness
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Negative thinking
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Suspiciousness
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Hypochondriacal thinking (fear of serious illness)
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Paranoid thinking
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Excessive fantasy life
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Obsessional thoughts of controlling others
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often

Emotional Life

Fear of giving oneself to others
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Regularly irritable or hostile (anger keeps others at distance)
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Overly anxious
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Panic attacks
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Overreaction emotionally to minor life events
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Rarely relaxed or peaceful
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Bad temper
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Excessive criticism of others (as a unconscious way to distance)
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Overly upset if things don’t go as planned
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Very lonely (fearful of being vulnerable and of receiving love)
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Fearful of the future
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Emotional rigidity
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Lack of gentleness
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often

Physical Health

Irritable bowel syndrome
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Muscle spasms in different parts of the body
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Colitis
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Vulnerability to all major diseases if mistrust persists for years
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Severe headaches
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Dizziness/lightheadedness
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often

Spiritual Life

Limited ability to receive love
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Limited ability to pray
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Difficulty in mediating
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Difficulty giving oneself completely to the Lord
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
Lack of spiritual direction
Never Very Little Moderately Very Often
 
Total:

 

A score below 10 indicates mild mistrust, a score between 10 and 20 reveals moderate mistrust and above 20, severe mistrust.

Origins of Mistrust from Different Life Stages

Childhood

  • Difficult father relationship
  • Loss of a parent, brother, sister, or close friend(s)
  • Serious illness in a parent, sibling, or oneself
  • Excessive time in day care
  • Alcoholic parent
  • A fearful, mistrustful or overly controlling parent
  • Legacy of mistrust and fear in the family
  • Betrayal by loved ones
  • Parental separation or divorce
  • Rejection by peers
  • Cold, distant, unaffectionate parents
  • Victimization by the excessive anger of others
  • Poverty

Adolescence

  • Same causes as in childhood
  • Poor body image
  • Rejection by peers
  • Difficulty in playing sports
  • Parental separation or divorce
  • Used as a sexual object

Adult Life

  • Same as in childhood and adolescence
  • Repeating the weakness of a mistrustful parent
  • Betrayal experiences by seminary faculty or formation team
  • Hurts by brother priests
  • Betrayal by loved ones
  • Unjust treatment by bosses or coworkers
  • Hurts by those in ministry
  • False accusations
  • Financial pressures
  • Loss of job
  • Loss of health
  • Rejection by significant others
  • Recipient of excessive anger

Total:

Copyright © 2006 Mistrust Checklist, R. P. Fitzgibbons, M.D.

Our mission is to strengthen Catholic marriages and families by educating spouses, marital therapists and clergy about common causes of conflicts in marital self-giving and effective approaches to alleviating such conflicts. 

Our mission is to strengthen families by educating parents about common causes of emotional and behavioral conflicts in children and by providing effective approaches to alleviating such conflicts. 

Dr. Fitzgibbons has coauthored the second edition of a textbook on the treatment on excessive anger in adult and child psychiatric disorders in the field of positive psychology for American Psychological Association Books, Forgiveness Therapy: An Empirical Guide for Resolving Anger and Restoring Hope.