For immediate release: Wednesday, Aug. 7
Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 862 7688 home, 314 503 0003 cell, SNAPdorris@gmail.com)
Fr. Alejandro Flores, a convicted Joliet predator priest, has been deported to Bolivia. Those who enabled him to hurt kids, however, are escaping scot-free.
(We believe he has not been defrocked. So he should be referred to as “Fr. Flores.” He is NOT, we believe, “a former Catholic priest.” We believe he’s still being paid.)
Top Catholic officials in Joliet, we are convinced, ignored warning signs about Fr. Flores. In fact, prosecutors disclosed that, according to one newspaper, “Catholic officials had some warning signs about Flores.” The Kane County State’s Attorney’s Office said that “Flores was caught with gay porn on his computer by Catholic officials in the spring of 2009. Though the website posted a disclaimer saying the people involved in the sex acts were not minors, [prosecutors] said some of the images appeared to be those of young boys.”
Yet these church officials let Fr. Flores be around kids, and even now they are cleverly managing to avoid being exposed as corrupt and complicit.
We worry about the safety of Bolivian kids. We urge Bolivia’s bishops to warn their flock about Fr. Flores. And we urge Joliet’s Bishop Daniel Conlon to write to his Bolivian colleagues urging them to take this simple public safety step.
Bishop Sartain, who is now investigating the nuns, showed poor judgment by ordaining Flores, since the bishop knew Flores had sexual problems. Flores went on to sexually abuse one or more little boys in his new parish. As soon as Flores was jailed for being a sexual predator, the Vatican whisked Sartain out of Joliet and elevated him to be the archbishop of Seattle, Washington. So, Sartain has elevated a child abuser to the priesthood, and the Vatican has not defrocked Flores, even after Flores went to jail for child sexual abuse. Now Flores is home in Bolivia as a priest and free to sexually abuse more children as a priest. Where is the accountability of the Vatican? I do not think the Vatican cares about anything that they can get away with, in regard to the sexual abuse of children.
Sincerely, Dr Rosemary Eileen McHugh, Chicago, Illinois