For immediate release: July 25, 2013
Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)
A priest from the Santa Barbara Catholic Church in Guam was fired for failing to remove a sex offender from the parish.
Father Paul Gofigan had been instructed by Archbishop Anthony Apuron to fire a predator who worked at the church but failed to do so believing the crime was too far in the past, therefore putting children in harm's way. Gofigan now wishes to seek a canonical hearing in order to defend his careless decision and save his career.
We urge the Archbishop to stand by his decision of firing Father Gofigan. It is outrageous that any individual would rather put his career before the safety of children, let alone a man who is supposed to be considered as a community representative and leader. We also urge the parishioners of the Santa Barbara Catholic Church to speak out against Gofigan's choice to endanger the safety of their children.