“I didn’t do enough.”
That’s how one of the most heroic whistleblowers in Catholic history describes her efforts to expose predators and protect kids.
“I didn’t do enough.”
What haunting words. That must send a chill up the spine of anyone who works – or worked - for any Catholic entity in Minnesota.
That’s what Jennifer Haselberger told the Associated Press the other day.
Haselberger was, for years, a high ranking archdiocesan chancery office staffer in the Twin Cities.
When she saw that her church colleagues and supervisors were ignoring or hiding evidence of possible crimes by predatory priests (including Fr. Jon Shelley and Fr. Curtis Wehmeyer), she spoke up and stepped down.
She’s done more to expose continuing clergy sex cirmes and cover ups than perhaps any Catholic employee since Fr. Thomas Doyle.
Even so, she now feels like she “didn’t do enough.”
Imagine how her former peers – in the chancery office, in parishes, in parochial schools – will feel years from now when the teacher or seminarian or nun or priest or brother who they suspected might have acted inappropriately with a child is arrested for child sex crimes (like Fr. Wehmeyer was) or for adult sex crimes (like Fr. Mark Huberty was) or found guilty in court (like Fr. Robert Kapoun was) or suspended (like Fr. Michael Keating was).
You get the point: there are lots of Catholic employees in the Twin Cities who have hurt kids and adults. Lots of other Catholic employees have hunches or information or suspicions about them. Most, however, stay silent. Few find the courage to do what Haselberger did.
And many, maybe right now or more likely later in life, will come to regret their inaction. They’ll end up guilt-ridden, because they “didn’t do enough” to ameliorate the suffering of those already hurt and “didn’t do enough” to prevent the suffering of those who were hurt AFTER they chose to stay comfortable in their silence.
Join us at the 2019 SNAP National Conference!
The annual SNAP National Conference is your opportunity to connect with other survivors and advocates from around the country for a weekend of learning, healing and fun. This year's conference will be held from July 26-28 at the Westin Alexandria Hotel. Don't wait! Register for the conference today and be sure reserve your room at the Westin using our special discounted rate!
Stay tuned for more details included keynotes, workshop highlights, and more.Register Today