Breakout Sessions

Breakout Sessions

Session #1

Recognizing and Recovering from the Assault on the Spirit (Spire Parlor) - Tom Doyle

Sexual violation by a cleric can be more devastating than if perpetrated by a lay person. Abuse by a cleric that one has faith in adds an especially painful dimension: the assault on one’s spirit.  The damage done by clerics who abuse and clerics who enable them is especially dangerous and toxic because it is the manipulation of the victim’s beliefs and the perversion of his or her loyalty that facilitates the abuse.

Women's Support (Hancock Parlor) - Gail Howard

Meet with others who have “walked a mile in your shoes” and get some of the affirmation you deserve! Focusing on the unique needs of female survivors, this session explores ways to educate about and cope with rape and sexual violence, reduce guilt and shame even if society “blames” the victim and discuss whether to report these crimes, especially years later. The session will include a self-help support meeting where everyone will be able to share, but no one is required to do so. For those who do not speak, please know that listening is recognized and appreciated as a gift.

Men's Support (Grant Park Parlor) - David O'Regan

This session focuses on the special needs of male survivors and includes a confidential, participatory support group meeting for men. This is a chance to meet with other survivors in a safe setting and learn from others’ experiences. Men are often forced to keep sexual attacks a secret for fear of being labeled weak. This session will help explore ways for men to dispel this myth. While every participant will have the opportunity to speak, no one will be required to do so.

Essential Nourishment during Chronic Stress (Wrigley Parlor) - Kate Bochte

Chronic stress wreaks havoc on the human body and often leads to tragic consequences. Don’t let this happen to you! How does the body respond to stress? How can you protect your body from harm and support healing? Why is quality nutrition vital and what are some key nutrients? Which foods contain harmful toxins? How can you put it all together? Join us and receive a workbook to support your progress toward better health protection.

Sound Healing Drum Circle (Water Tower Parlor) - Jeff Stitely and Mehtab Kirtan

Come explore the healing sounds of percussion instruments from all corners of the world. This gentle introduction to drumming requires no experience. We will dive into each instrument's sound and the feeling it invokes then weave them all together into an infectious groove that will put a smile on your face and make you want to dance. The unity and connection that happens from playing music with others is beautiful and healing. 

Self-Care Strategies for Coping with Trauma (Millenium Parlor) - Bill Jenkins

Trauma shatters lives and creates a shadow under which survivors must live.  Emerging from this shadow into safety and relaxation is critical to restoring well-being and functioning.  There are many simple practices that can be done on an informal and self-help basis to minimize the impact of trauma and augment other therapeutic efforts.  A variety of these “Do No Harm Strategies” will be presented in order to help attendees better understand trauma  and achieve the best possible outcome for their lives.

 

Session #2

Healing PTSD: It Really Is Possible to Get Your Life Back  (Millenium Parlor) - Dr. Marny Turvill

The notion that PTSD is permanent is outdated and has left millions of us suffering without solutions or hope. The new science of neuroplasticity puts you back in the driver’s seat and able to retrain your brain. You can’t erase the trauma, but you can erase its control over your daily life and finally get back to normal. Come learn how to get your brain and body working for you, instead of against you.

Family Support (Hancock Parlor) - Judy Lorenz and Barbi Jolliffe

Sexual abuse of one family member invariably affects all members of the family. In this session, you can share your stories and feelings about how the abuse of a loved one has affected you, your family, or those around you. This session will tackle the questions of “how can we heal from secondary abuse?” and “how do we help a loved one heal?” and will rely on the experiences of those in the group to help provide answers.

Adult Support (Wrigley Parlor)

Those abused as adults endure the same kind of horrific consequences as children, but are often overlooked or marginalized. This workshop focuses on the needs of this special group. It will include discussions focusing on the unique point of view of the adult survivor, and will provide opportunities to ask questions and receive support.

Legal Issues (Spire Parlor) - Mitchell Garabedian

Many survivors struggle with the decision of whether suing the church is helpful or harmful. This workshop will explore the pros and cons of the issue. The legal system is often frightening and confusing for survivors, and this is a chance to ask questions. We will discuss how to assess the facts to determine if filing is appropriate. We will also discuss alternatives if you are not able to file.

Healing Through Movement (Grant Park Parlor) - Heather Fraelick

Our bodies are designed to move.  When we stop this natural design, tension and stress build up causing an array of ailments in our body, mind and spirit.  Simply moving our body can release this stagnation so healing can happen. During our time together, we will explore easy, gentle movement sequences, while seated and sometimes standing, that will unlock holding patterns and release tension so we can be in our bodies with a greater sense of ease and freedom.

Sound Healing Gong Wash (Water Tower Parlor) - Stevenson Valentor

Gong Wash is one of the most soothing, body detoxing, holistic, rejuvenating vibrational ancient tools. A gong wash or gong sound meditation is a sound massage for the body and mind. This session will be akin to sound therapy and will mainly focus on a gathered impromptu community to share rhythm, to attune to one another and especially to ourselves!

 

Session #3

Recognizing and Recovering from the Assault on the Spirit (Spire Parlor) - Tom Doyle

Sexual violation by a cleric can be more devastating than if perpetrated by a lay person. Abuse by a cleric that one has faith in adds an especially painful dimension: the assault on one’s spirit.  The damage done by clerics who abuse and clerics who enable them is especially dangerous and toxic because it is the manipulation of the victim’s beliefs and the perversion of his or her loyalty that facilitates the abuse.

Women's Support (Hancock Parlor) - Dottie Klammer

Meet with others who have “walked a mile in your shoes” and get some of the affirmation you deserve! Focusing on the unique needs of female survivors this session explores ways to educate about and cope with rape and sexual violence, reduce guilt and shame even if society “blames” the victim and discuss where to report these crimes, especially years later. The session will include a self-help support meeting where everyone will be able to share, but no one in required to do so. For those who do not speak, please know that listening is recognized and appreciated as a gift.

Men's Support (Grant Park Parlor) - David Lorenz

This session focuses on the special needs of male survivors and includes a confidential, participatory support group meeting for men. This is a chance to meet with other survivors in a safe setting and learn from others’ experiences. Men are often forced to keep sexual attacks a secret for fear of being labeled weak. This session will help explore ways for men to dispel this myth. While every participant will have the opportunity to speak, no one will be required to do so.

Healing PTSD: It Really Is Possible to Get Your Life Back  (Millenium Parlor) - Dr. Marny Turvill

The notion that PTSD is permanent is outdated and has left millions of us suffering without solutions or hope. The new science of neuroplasticity puts you back in the driver’s seat and able to retrain your brain. You can’t erase the trauma, but you can erase its control over your daily life and finally get back to normal. Come learn how to get your brain and body working for you, instead of against you.

Sound Healing Gong Wash (Water Tower Parlor) - Stevenson Valentor

Gong Wash is one of the most soothing, body detoxing, holistic, rejuvenating vibrational ancient tools. A gong wash or gong sound meditation is a sound massage for the body and mind. This session will be akin to sound therapy and will mainly focus on a gathered impromptu community to share rhythm, to attune to one another and especially to ourselves!

Wave of the Future: Video Conferencing extends the Promise and Reach of Survivor Support (Wrigley Parlor) - Ashley Easter and Tim Lennon

This workshop will take on several elements and will include the global expansion of the survivor support structure and reaching rural areas.  Specific interest areas include abused by nuns and abused as adults.  We will discuss the technical tools, resources and training, and the purchase of computing equipment.  We will also discuss the outreach areas of who to invite, how to vet participants and establish guidelines for inclusion and privacy.

 

 

Breakout Leaders

Tom Doyle since 1984, has worked on exposing clergy sexual abuse in the U.S., Europe and Canada and helped grand juries in the U.S and investigatory commissions in Australia, Ireland and Canada. His compassion and dedication have brought hope to thousands of survivors worldwide.

Gail Hall Howard has been co-leader of SNAP Connecticut since 2013 and active in SNAP since 2003.  Abused by the pastor of her childhood parish in Oak Park, Illinois, she did not disclose until a 2003 Bridgeport VOTF meeting. Formerly a college advisor, program manager and teacher, she is now writing a memoir.  

David O’Regan is SNAP'S Boston-Central MA Volunteer Leader. He holds monthly support meetings in the Boston area. He also has been a volunteer for the “Massachusetts Enough Abuse Campaign” in Southern Worcester County speaking to young people, parents, and professionals on the dangers of sexual abuse. David is married to his wife Jane, and over the last 47 years together, they have raised six children and have been foster parents to 72 other beautiful children.

Kate Bochte is on a mission to promote optimal health, particularly among survivors of severe emotional trauma, chronic stress, and PTSD. With science-based information, useful tools, and ongoing support, she encourages individuals to create and implement their own wellness strategy. A former Health Science schoolteacher, Kate is a certified health coach and an associate with USANA Health Sciences, Inc. She’s been a SNAP volunteer since 2004. Get her free UnRut Your Health guide at katesdailybread.com

Jeff Stickley has had an illustrious jazz drumming career playing with Chick Corea, Wynton Marsalis, Randy Brecker, Eddie Harris, Larry Coryell, Kathleen Battle, Von Freeman, Bobby Lewis, Barry Harris and toured the world with Patricia Barber. Jeff has been a student of world percussion his whole life and taught students from Kindergarten to University students. For 25 years, Jeff has lead personal growth groups for men and drum circles have been a powerful component.

Bill Jenkins learned about how trauma affects victims and their families the hard way, after his sixteen year-old son, William, was murdered in 1997. Using the latest research in the field, he has turned his attention to understanding the neurobiology of trauma and has developed an array of practical strategies and exercises that can help trauma survivors better understand and cope with the internal and external demands of everyday life.  

Dr. Marny Turvill spent sixteen years as a conventional pediatrician. She was devastated that nothing she’d learned could help her get out of her own 10-year nightmare with Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, a form of PTSD. Ultimately, she achieved a full recovery by retraining her brain’s response to triggers and rebalancing her body naturally. Dr. Marny is now a stress and trauma recovery expert, helping motivated adults reclaim better-than-normal lives.

Judy Lorenz attended The University of Maryland. She has four children and two beautiful granddaughters. Judy has been a teacher and a Program Assistant for the Bowie Senior Center. In 2011, Judy became president of CITI Ministries, Inc., a lay organization calling married priests back into  ministry. In 2002,  Judy with her husband Dave (a survivor of clergy abuse), became active in SNAP in the aftermath of the Boston clergy sex abuse scandal.

Barbi Jolliffe is the mother of two abused sons. While healing her family, she discovered her passion for helping other survivors and their loved ones heal. She became a Certified Life Coach, author and speaker who specializes in helping men, women, teens and children to recover from trauma, overcome hardships and triumph over tragedies. This includes abuse, rape, family issues, parenting and more. Barbi is the mother of five and the grandmother of three.

Heather Fraelick is a Chicago-based licensed massage therapist, dancer, instructor and choreographer.  ​She has performed and taught throughout the Chicagoland area and surrounding suburbs, high schools, dance conventions, and at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago.  In addition to her dance career, Heather owns a therapeutic massage practice, teaches Myofascial Release self-care workshops, and is an adjunct instructor at The New School for Massage, Bodywork & Healing.

For more info visit:​ www.heatherfraelick.com

Stevenson Valentor is an innovative artist, teacher, and healer in Chicago. He actively performs, records, and tours with projects Bassel & The Supernaturals, Gramps The Vamp, Leah Shoshonah, and Abud: A Band.  He has released several original albums, and leads versatile projects of his own (Here & Now, Cold Seasons). Outside of his musical life, Stevenson has long been a spiritual seeker, and is now a certified Kundalini Yoga Instructor. He has been synthesizing the practice of Kundalini Yoga and Meditation with his own performing and teaching, and leads spiritual drum circles.  

Dottie Klammer , A SNAP Leader in Richmond, VA, was a critical care nurse for 38 years and currently does haling touch. She was a cradle, devout Catholic until midlife when she joined the Unity Church where she is now a prayer chaplain. From personal experience, Dottie Knows how much courage it takes to walk in the door to your first SNAP meeting. She is a survivor of a nun's sexual abuse at the age of 7. 

David Lorenz was abused by a Catholic priest while attending an all-boys Catholic high school. He was finally able to tell people about his experience in 1992 when the perpetrator was exposed and criminally convicted for his actions. David has been a member of SNAP since 2006, and started a support group for survivors in 2009. He has been a survivor activist that has testified before the state legislature to change the statute of limitations. 

Tim Lennon is a survivor serving as President of the Board of Directors and member of the Board for the previous seven years. He is currently acting as administrator of SNAP until the replacement executive director is hired. He is a local leader of SNAP in Tucson. He is the proud father of twin daughters who turn twenty at the end of the month. Tim takes yoga five days a week and keeps active with progressive politics and social change issues.

Ashley Easter is a writer, speaker, and abuse-victim advocate who educates religious and secular communities on abuse, introducing them to safe practices and resources. She is the founder of The Courage Conference, a judgement-free place for survivors of abuse—and those who love them—to hear inspiring stories from other survivors and advocates about moving forward in boldness.

Book: The Courage Coach: A Practical, Friendly Guide on How to Heal From Abuse

Twitter:  @ashleymeaster

Website: www.TheCourageConference.com