Abuse victims blast Gary bishop -Tuesday 11am
Abuse victims blast Gary Catholic officials
Four names should be added to “accused” list, group says
SNAP: One has been found to be a ‘sexually violent predator’
Victims, witnesses & whistle blowers are urged to call law enforcement
Holding signs and childhood photos at a sidewalk news conference, two clergy sex abuse victims will disclose names and information about four publicly accused child molesting clerics who spent time in the Gary area but have attracted virtually no public attention in the area.
They will also
--prod Gary’s Catholic bishop to add more names to his “credibly accused” clergy list,
--urge victims to “step forward, get help, protect kids and expose predators,” and
--beg anyone who saw, suspected or suffered clergy sex crimes or cover ups in Indiana to contact the attorney generaland urge him to conduct a statewide investigation into this crisis.
Tuesday, January 29 at 11:00 a.m.
On the sidewalk outside the Holy Angels Cathedral, 640 Tyler St. in Gary (219 882 6079)
One-two abuse victims including an Illinois man who is the Chicago volunteer leader of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAPnetwork.org)
1. Gary Bishop Donald Hying has posted names of 10 "credibly accused" abusers on his website. http://www.dcgary.org/pdf/082718.pdf
But SNAP has found four more publicly accused abusive clerics who spent time in the Gary area who’ve been omitted and should be included, the group says. They are:
--Fr. Richard J. McCormick, who belongs to a religious order called the Salesians of Don Bosco. He is accused of molesting at least 16 children and was convicted and imprisoned. “McCormick was also accused taking a boy from Indiana”, where he worked in the Gary diocese, “and sexually molesting him on a trip to Rome in the mid-1970s,” well-known attorney Mitchell Garabedian told the Boston Herald in 2012. Garabedian also described the priest as having “a decades-old history of alleged abuse.” McCormick worked at Salesian Prep School in Cedar Lake Indiana and several states including Florida, New York,Louisiana and Massachusetts.
--Fr. Thomas M. Gannon, a Jesuit who had “multiple sexual abuse allegations against him from 1961 to 1998 including one in Gary where he worked for at least three years (1983-1986), according to his religious supervisors and news accounts. Last month, he was listed as “credibly accused” by the head of the Midwest Jesuits on a church website.
--Fr. Eugene Patrick Burns, a Chicago archdiocesan priest who also worked in Hammond Indiana at St. Margaret Hospital andHealth Centers. In the Official Catholic Directories for 1990, 1991 and 1992, he was listed as a Gary priest. The priest is accused of molesting at least one child and at least one lawsuit against him was settled in 2005.
--Fr. Daniel J. McCormack, a Chicago archdiocesan priest who faces at least 23 accusers and was named in dozens of civil lawsuit ending with settlements of more than $10 million. In 2006, he worked in the Gary diocese at St. Mary’s parish in Crown Point. In 2007, he was convicted of molesting five kids in Chicago but prosecutors say was abusing on “an almost daily basis.”Ten years later, the priest was found to be a sexually violent predator.
Photos of Frs. Burns, McCormack, and McCormick, along with much more detail about all accused Gary priests, are available at BishopAccountability.org.
Frs. McCormick and McCormack are still alive, Fr. Gannon died in 2011 and Fr. Burns died in 2005.
2__Gary’s list of "credibly accused" priests also omits the photos and whereabouts of those priests. Those details should be provided, SNAP says, because they will help survivors identify their abuse as well as protect kids.
Where these priests are now is important because nearby parents and prospective employers should be warned about their presence. That is the single best step the bishop could take to prevent more horrific crimes against more innocent kids.
How they looked in the past is important because that information helps victims identify them. It usually takes decades for survivors to come forward. They might only recall that everyone called him "Father Mac," not knowing whether he was Fr. Mack Smith or Fr. McGillicuty or Fr. MacArthur. Even parents who are long-time parishioners may have trouble remembering a priest who worked in their church just a few months.
Every time an abuser remains hidden, kids remain at risk, SNAP maintains. “Disclosing the truth is the best way to safeguard the vulnerable, heal the wounded and help the church move forward,” the group says.
Finally, SNAP is begging anyone who may have seen, suspected or suffered crimes or cover ups in Indiana to contact local law enforcement. And SNAP is urging all citizens to also call Indiana’s attorney general and urge him to investigate all of the state’s dioceses, as 16 AGs are doing across the US.
50 State AG Call for Grand Jury
Any investigation must be:
- independent of and separate from the church
- must have subpoena powers and ability to compel testimony under oath
Anything short of these criteria is a sham and whitewash.
In addition, write letters to the editor, make phone calls to politicians as they can apply pressure to keep them responsive to our demand. We need to make efforts to ensure that they follow up on what the state is doing to investigate these crimes.
The Attorneys General of forty states have inquired about the grand jury process in Pennsylvania. Let's get statewide investigations going in fifty states.
Note to Letter Writers
Use your own words and style of writing. Cut and paste from the templates as you wish. Include your experiences, whether as a survivor or as a member of the community. And relate your letter to the state you were abused in or state now living in.