IA - SNAP applauds victims in case against Pella pastor
We applaud these brave women who are continuing their fight for justice after being abused by Rev. Patrick Edouard. Valerie and Anne Bandstra deserve praise for continuing forward with their lawsuits despite apparent attempts from church leaders to undermine the abuse that the Bandstra women suffered.
Sexual contact with a priest or reverend – someone who is supposedly God’s envoy on earth – involves an inherent power imbalance that undermines it and prevents it from being a true relationship. The fact that Rev. Edouard used this position and assumed authority as a counselor in order to groom and abuse these women – both sexually and financially – is indicative of exactly why this is a form of sexual abuse. We are disappointed, but not surprised, that church leaders in Pella refuse to acknowledge this.
We hope their lawsuit is successful and will encourage others who may have been abused by Rev. Edouard to come forward.
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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.
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.