KY--Ex-Owensboro priest named in new grand jury report
For immediate release: Thursday, March 31
Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, 314 645 5915 home, firstname.lastname@example.org)
A predator priest from Pennsylvania was quietly moved to Kentucky, according to a recently-released grand jury report. We believe he molested kids in the Owensboro area and fear that some of them are still in pain and have yet to come forward and get help.
We call on Owensboro Catholic officials to disclose
--where the predator priest worked and
--the names of other out-of-state child molesting clerics who were allowed to work in western Kentucky.
He is Fr. Raymond Waldruff. According a story in Sunday’s Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “In the 1960s, after he was accused of abuse in Blair County, Pa., (Catholic officials) transferred Fr. Waldruff to Owensboro, Ky., where he faced more complaints.”
We strongly suspect that Fr. Waldruff isn’t the only child molesting cleric from elsewhere who Owensboro Catholic officials let work in western Kentucky kids. We urge Owensboro Bishop William Medley to disclose the names, whereabouts and work histories of every predatory priest, nun, seminarian, brother or bishop who molested elsewhere and was then quietly sent to work in western Kentucky.
We also urge him to post on his diocesan website the names of all child molesting clerics who live or work or have lived or worked – in Owensboro. About 30 US bishops have done this. It’s a “bare minimum” step toward healing and prevention.
Fr. Waldruff died in 1985. He also worked in West Virginia. We suspect that there are still adults who he assaulted as kids who are suffering in shame, silence and self-blame in all three states where he worked. No matter what
Bishop Medley does or doesn’t do, we hope Catholic officials in all three states will use parish bulletins, pulpit announcements and church websites to reach out to them and offer help.
Bishop Medley has a terrible track record when it comes to protecting kids, exposing predators and disclosing cover ups. (See links below and more on our website.) He now has a chance to chart a new direction. We hope he finds the courage and compassion to do so.
(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.