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

Letters to Priests

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The Bethany Program

The Bethany program offers a comprehensive mental health evaluation program for priests, religious and seminarians.  Also, an intensive one to three month outpatient treatment program is available for serious psychological conflicts.  

Dr. Fitzgibbons and the professional staff have over 35 years of successful experience in treating priests, religious and seminarians with depression and loneliness, excessive anger, anxiety, insecurity, narcissism, pornography conflicts and other sexual disorders.


Our Approach

Dr. Fitzgibbons has co-authored a second textbook for APA Books on the treatment of excessive anger which is highly co-morbid in psychiatric disorders and interferes with recovery, as well as influencing relapses. This book, Forgiveness Therapy: An Empirical Guide for Resolving Anger and Restoring Hope, is recognized as initiating a new system of psychotherapy in the mental health field - forgiveness therapy. Our approaches to treating the most common psychiatric disorders of depression, anxiety, addiction, excessive anger and compulsive disorders are described in this textbook, in articles on this website and on our marital website, www.maritalhealing.com.

Our work is respectful of the faith of priests and their deep desire to lead chaste lives.  We view the role of faith as essential in uncovering and resolving deeply rooted emotional and personality conflicts.

Benefits of Intensive Outpatient Treatment

The current standard for treatment in the mental health field is that psychiatric hospitalization is initiated for those with severe psychiatric disorders that cannot be treated in an outpatient setting.  When necessary it is used for as brief a period as possible.  This recommendation is based upon the best available research which indicates that prolonged psychiatric hospitalization is not in the best interest of patients.

There are numerous benefits to intensive outpatient intervention, including its cost effectiveness. Priests have commented that they have appreciated the benefits of intensive outpatient treatment in which their dignity as priests was protected by avoiding a prolonged psychiatric hospitalization.

Pornography treatment

We have offered conferences in a number of dioceses and seminaries on the pornography plague that is causing serious harm to our culture.  Webinars of these conferences can be viewed on our website.  Priests with this conflict have responded to intensive outpatient treatment and follow up with biweekly priests teleconference.  Anonymity is maintained in this group therapy.

Safe Environment Education

While excellent programs have been initiated for the crisis in the Church, additional knowledge is important to protect priests and laity.  In particular, an understanding of the conflicts in adult males that lead to attraction to adolescent males, the primary victims of the crisis, and their resolution is needed, as well as the dangers associated with pornography use and selfishness.  

Accusations against Priests

In our clinical experience a marked increase in false accusations against priests and religious has occurred in regard to “boundary violations,” inappropriate sexual behavior and excessive anger following the crisis in the Church.  Our expertise in these areas enables us to provide a thorough evaluation of both the priest and his accuser(s).

Screening of Candidates for Seminary

In our evaluation of candidates for seminary and religious life we attempt to identify any conflicts that would interfere with the ability to maintain a healthy personality and with healthy self-giving later as a spiritual father and a spouse to the Church.  The conflicts include selfishness, excessive anger, weaknesses in confidence, loneliness, difficulties in trusting and sexual issues.

Consultation on Growth in Affirmation in Seminarians/Religious Formation

We offer a long history of successful consultation for seminarians who are struggling with emotional or behavioral conflicts.

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.