Fr. Manuel LaRosa-Lopez Heads to Court and SNAP asks Cardinal DiNardo to be Considerate of Victims
On Tuesday, an accused predator priest will be in court again, facing charges that he abused at least two children while serving in the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston (with another survivor having recently come forward, but not yet filed charges). But before Fr. Manuel LaRosa-Lopez returns to court, we call on Houston’s top Catholic official to take steps to avoid potentially intimidating or hurting more victims.
We know from years of personal experience that it can intimidate and hurt victims when alleged child molesting clerics wear their Roman collar in court. So Cardinal Daniel DiNardo should forbid Fr. LaRosa-Lopez from doing so.
We also know that it intimidates and hurts victims when well-meaning but misguided parishioners rally in public around accused abusers. So DiNardo should instruct his flock to stay home, remain open-minded and avoid making public statements that might scare or depress victims, witnesses and whistleblowers into staying silent.
When alleged pedophile priests are being prosecuted or sued, bishops often pretend to be powerless. But someone as powerful as Cardinal DiNardo could and should take these two simple but important steps immediately to prevent more pain and to help law enforcement officials do their job without interference.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network, has been providing support for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings for 30 years. We have more than 25,000 survivors and supporters in our network. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)
SNAP will be Representing Clergy Abuse Survivors in Rome!
We are taking the fight to Rome and are standing up for all survivors on a world stage! From February 19-25, Board President Tim Lennon, Seattle Leader Mary Dispenza, Los Angeles Leader Esther Hatfield Miller and Austin Leader Carol Midboe will be traveling to Rome for Pope Francis' Papal Abuse Summit.
If you are a member of the media and looking to get in touch with these survivors while in Rome, click here for our media advisory and contact information. If you are interested in connecting with a survivor in the US from your area of coverage, please contact one of the SNAP leaders in the US listed below:
- East Coast/DC: Becky Ianni (SNAPvirginia@cox.net, 703-801-6044)
- Midwest/Chicago: Zach Hiner (email@example.com, 517-974-9009)
- Midwest/St. Louis: David Clohessy (firstname.lastname@example.org, 314314-566-9790)
- West Coast / San Francisco: Melanie Sakoda (email@example.com, 925-708-6175)
If you are looking to help spread the word about the importance of this summit and for survivors to be heard, add your voice to the conversation on social media using the hashtag #PBC2019. Be sure to follow SNAP on twitter and Facebook and share our posts, add your comments, and let the world know that we are watching!Learn More