Catholic newspaper criticizes Pope's remarks today
For immediate release, September 23, 2015
The editor of the independent National Catholic Reporter takes Francis to task today – as he should – for his first remarks about the church’s seemingly-endless scandal of sexual violence and secrecy.
An NCR reporter says that Francis made “an oblique” reference to the abuse and cover up crisis. And NCR editor Dennis Coday said that the pope’s “sadly disappointing” message was “a glaring oversight” that “will undoubtedly raise the charges of ‘he just doesn’t get it.’”
Both journalists are right. Francis today basically ignored those who are vulnerable because of the crisis: children. He basically ignored those who are suffering because of the crisis: victims.
He praised, instead of chastising, those who are causing the crisis: bishops. And he offered not a single step forward, other than his vague plea that these crimes, still happening now, somehow “not be repeated.”
Francis continues to please many who want a more merciful church but disappoint most who want a safer one.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. SNAP was founded in 1988 and has more than 20,000 members. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)
Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747, firstname.lastname@example.org), Peter Isely (414-429-7259, email@example.com), Barbara Dorris (314-503-0003 cell, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org), David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, firstname.lastname@example.org)
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.