FL--Victims urge Orlando bishop to act on abuser
For immediate release: Tuesday, April 12, 2016
A predator priest from the Altoona Pennsylvania area identified last month in a grand jury report now lives in Orlando. We urge Orlando Bishop John Noonan to aggressively seek out anyone in Florida who may have seen, suspected or suffered his crimes.
He is Fr. Martin D. McCamley. A grand jury convened by Pennsylvania’s attorney general found that:
--Fr. McCamley was a sexual partner of another Pennsylvania priest, Father James Bunn,
--The two of them sexually abused the same child, which was “coordinated on the part of McCamley and Bunn.”
--The priest’s “proclivity to engage in impermissible sexual conduct was an open joke among diocesan officials,”
--Fr. McCamley “was infuriated” when one victim “rebuffed” him and the priest “began to retaliate against the boy by criticizing him in choir,” and
--Fr. McCamley was once taken to a hospital with a bleeding rectum.
In 1981, when Fr. McCamley was vice principal of a Catholic High School, he was reported to the bishop for allegedly molesting a boy but the bishop “dismissed the complaint outright.” Catholic officials kept Fr. McCamley on the job, which “endangered children for another 25 years,” the grand jury found.
Since the Vatican hasn’t defrocked Fr. McCamley, as best we can tell, he’s still a priest.
In the face of all this, it’s immoral for Noonan to passively sit in his office and do nothing.
This isn’t rocket science. Noonan knows what a caring shepherd would do here. Noonan should personally go to each parish where Fr. McCamley worked, look his flock in the eye, and beg them – clearly and emphatically – to call police if they have any knowledge or suspicions about Fr. McCamley’s crimes.”
The bishop should also turn any records he may have about Fr. McCamley to law enforcement agencies. And Noonan should use his website, diocesan newspaper and parish bulletins to reach out to
The bishop has a public relations staff. It would be quick, simple and easy for him to stand up before cameras and say ‘I worry that Fr. McCamley may still be hurting kids. I implore you to call police and prosecutors now if you saw, suspected or suffered his crimes.’ How hard is this?”
Such outreach often works and successfully encourages those who are silent to speak up.
Child molesters rarely stop. We’re convinced that Fr. McCamley has committed crimes that are recent enough that the statute of limitations hasn’t expired. Someone must reach out to those younger victims, and no one can do that faster and easier than Catholic officials.
Catholic officials recruited, educated, ordained, trained, hired, shielded and transferred Fr. McCamley, giving him more and more opportunities to sexually assault kids. It’s irresponsible for those church officials to now sit passively back and do nothing while Fr. McCamley lives out his retirement comfortably among unsuspecting families and vulnerable kids and while many of his victims live out their lives in pain.
According to the report, Fr. McCamley was born in 1936, was ordained in 1962, worked "in many of the parishes of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown" and retired in 2004.
No matter what Bishop Noonan does or doesn’t do, we urge current and former Orlando area Catholic church members and staff to warn everyone they can about Fr. McCamley.
We also urge every single person who saw, suspected or suffered child sex crimes and cover ups in Catholic churches or institutions to protect kids by calling police, get help by calling therapists, expose wrongdoers by calling journalists, get justice by calling attorneys, and get comfort by calling support groups like ours. This is how kids will be safer, adults will recover, criminals will be prosecuted, cover ups will be deterred and the truth will surface.
(NOTE – A photo and more information about Fr. McCamley is available at BishopAccountabililty.org)
(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)
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.