INTL- Who's watching defrocked predator archbishop now? SNAP asks
For immediate release: Friday, June 27, 2014
Statement by Joelle Casteix of Newport Beach, Western Regional Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (949.322.7434, firstname.lastname@example.org)
The Vatican is now disciplining another type of child molesting cleric - a diplomat (Archbishop Jozef Wesolowski). That's a new twist on an old pattern - Catholic officials dealing with those who commit child sex crimes while ignoring those who conceal child sex crimes.
We suspect that one reason Vatican officials are taking action in this case is because, according to the International Business Times, “a 13-year-old boy has said that the archbishop paid him to masturbate in his presence and filmed the act on his mobile phone.” We suspect there's a real fear that, if true, footage like this could surface publicly.
If the cops bust a street corner drug dealer - whether tall or short, young or old, left-handed or right-handed - but refuse to even try to bust the enablers, the big suppliers, the kingpins, little real progress will happen.
But this is precisely what church officials do – refuse to go after the source: the bishops who keep helping predators and endanger kids.
And with each iteration, each new “type” of child molesting cleric who is disciplined, many get unduly excited.
"This is big! This predator is high profile."
"This is big! This predator heads a religious order."
"This is big! This predator is close to the Pope."
"This is big! This predator is X or Y or Z."
And very little changes, because this crisis is more about the “big fish” than the “small fry.”
Finally, we desperately hope that we are proven wrong, but we worry that Wesolowski may flee. Dozens of child molesting clerics have evaded justice by simply jumping on a plane. Some are found years later, often in positions (paid or volunteer, inside or outside of the church) where they're around kids. We hope Vatican officials have jailed or will soon jail Wesolowski so this can't happen. Having a priest or a nun allegedly “monitor” him is a recipe for disaster.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 25 years and have 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)