MA- As new bishop takes over, Fall River diocese is sued
For immediate release: Thursday, Sept. 25, 2014
On the very day a new bishop was installed in the Fall River Diocese, another civil child sex abuse and cover up lawsuit was filed against the diocese. It stems from the crimes of a now-deceased predator priest who is among the most notorious and prolific child molesting clerics in US history.
He is Fr. James Porter who reportedly assaulted more than 100 kids.
What an inspiration it would be if Fall River's new bishop started his tenure by personally going to every parish where Porter worked begging victims to step forward and get help. We doubt this will happen but it should. In the parable of the “Good shepherd,” Jesus urges us to abandon the flock and go out into the cold and dark to find and help one lost sheep. This is precisely what Fall River Bishop Edgar da Cunha should do right away. Could there possibly be anything more important for him to take immediately after taking over the reins of the diocese?
(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)
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.