Media Statements

Contradicting Pope Francis, archbishop fights for secrecy

For immediate release: Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2015

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those abused by Priests (314 566 9790davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

Less than 48 hours after Pope Francis said “those who have covered up (abuse) are guilty,” the Philadelphia Inquirer has disclosed that Archbishop Charles Chaput is quietly working to keep secrets about a pedophile priest.

Francis made strong promises, including that “abuse cannot be kept secret any longer” and “all responsible will be held accountable."

Chaput apparently disagrees.

Read more
3 reactions Share

Pope Francis admits cover up; SNAP responds

For immediate release: Monday, Sept. 28

Statement by Barbara Blaine of Chicago, SNAP president (312-399-4747bblaine@snapnetwork.org)

After 30 years of public scandal in the US over predator priests and complicit bishops, finally a Catholic official is admitting that “princes of the church” covered up heinous crimes. But he fell short of admitting something even worse: that these cover ups continue even now.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/29/world/europe/pope-francis-sexual-abuse.html?_r=1   

Read more
4 reactions Share

Did Pope Francis ever take a single step to protect a child?

For immediate release: Sunday, Sept. 27

Statement by Becky Ianni of Virginia, SNAP Virginia State leader (703-801-6044 cell, SNAPVirginia@cox.net)

The AP reports that including incest victims in the papal meeting today is an effort to “redirect the discussion.”

http://www.usnews.com/news/us/articles/2015/09/27/as-many-as-a-million-expected-for-popes-last-mass-in-us

We hope that’s not true. If true, that’s incredibly cynical. It’s pathetic when wrongdoers claim “someone else is even worse.” It was hurtful to victims and Catholics alike when Francis said this in 2010.

http://www.bishop-accountability.org/news5/2013_04_Pope_Francis_In_My_Diocese.htm

Read more
2 reactions Share

Another “feel good, do nothing” papal meeting with survivors

For immediate release: Sunday, Sept. 27

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those abused by Priests (314 566 9790davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

Is a child anywhere on earth safer now that a pope, for maybe the seventh or eighth time or ninth time, has briefly chatted with abuse victims? No.

A smart public relations move. That’s what this meeting is.  Nothing more.

Read more
2 reactions Share

PA--A third disgraced prelate spends time with Francis

For immediate release: Saturday, September 26, 2015

Statement by Barbara Blaine of Chicago, SNAP president (312-399-4747bblaine@snapnetwork.org)

Today, Pope Francis con-celebrated mass with the disgraced former head of the Philadelphia archdiocese, Cardinal Justin Rigali. The other day, Francis brought with him to the White House the disgraced former head of the Los Angeles archdiocese, Cardinal Roger Mahony.
http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2015/09/22/controversial-la-cardinal-to-travel-with-pope-francis-for-dc-trip/

Read more
2 reactions Share

PA--Allentown Catholic officials beat abuse victim in court

For immediate release: Friday, Sept. 25

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those abused by Priests (314 566 9790davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

Allentown Catholic officials won a court ruling today in a child predator case.

http://www.mcall.com/news/local/police/mc-allentown-diocese-korean-student-sexual-abused-pius-20150925-story.html

Read more
1 reaction Share

Another appalling papal comment on abuse crisis

For immediate release: Friday, Sept. 25

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those abused by Priests (314 566 9790davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

Twice in two days, Pope Francis has made vague and brief references to the on-going abuse and cover up crisis, mentioning the pain of church staff but not the pain of abused children and betrayed parishioners. He refuses to even call the scandal by its name.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/25/nyregion/pope-francis-new-york-city-visit.html

http://www.kerngoldenempire.com/news/pope-francis-offers-prayers-after-hajj-tragedy

Read more
1 reaction Share

NY--Pope to address UN, despite Vatican non-compliance with treaties on Torture, Rights of the Child

For immediate release: Friday, Sept. 25

For more information: Barbara Blaine (312 399 4747bblaine@SNAPnetwork.org), Joelle Casteix (949 322 7434jcasteix@gmail.com), Peter Isely (414 429 7259peterisely@yahoo.com), Barbara Dorris (314 503 0003, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org), David Clohessy (314 566 9790davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

Pope speaks to UN but rebuffs UN treaties

Two UN committees investigated church cover-ups

Both issued reports last year harshly blasting Vatican

Experts made dozens of prevention recommendations

But Francis refuses to adopt them and turn over evidence


View the complete UN committee reports here:  http://ccrjustice.org/home/what-we-do/our-cases/snap-v-pope-et-al

Members of SNAP and the Center for Constitutional Rights will be available for in-person comment and interviews from 11 am to 2 pm at CCR’s offices: 666 Broadway, 7th floor, NYC, 212-614-6464, or at the contact numbers above.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Washington DC--Grosso Calls on Pope Francis and the Catholic Church to Protect Victims of Sexual Abuse

Statement by Councilmember At-Large David Grosso

Today, at 2:30pm, Councilmember David Grosso (I-At Large) will join victims of sexual abuse at the hands of priests at a rally in front of the Wilson Building. In advance of the rally, Grosso released the following statement:

 "In his prayer meeting with U.S. bishops yesterday, Pope Francis spoke of a 'generous commitment to bring healing'- this stance must extend to those who have suffered sexual abuse.  I am calling on the Pope to hold the bishops of the Catholic Church accountable for abuse committed on their watch. It is past time for the Church to support better laws that protect children, expose predators, and punish enablers.

Read more
1 reaction Share

NY--Pope should denounce Syracuse bishops, group says

For immediate release: Thursday, Sept. 24, 2015

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 503 0003, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org)

Yesterday, Pope Francis refused to criticize, even obliquely, even one US Catholic official yesterday for words or deeds that hurt innocent kids or wounded victims.

So today, while he’s in New York, we hope the pope will discipline or at least denounce two Syracuse bishops who have blamed victims of predator priests for their victimization. (This news just came to light last week. )

http://www.syracuse.com/news/index.ssf/2015/09/victims_partly_to_blame_in_priest_sex-abuse_cases_syracuse_bishop_testified.html

Read more
1 reaction Share

IL--Chicago abuse victims blasts new papal remarks

For immediate release: Wednesday, Sept. 23

Statement by Barbara Blaine of Chicago, SNAP president of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) (312-399-4747,bblaine@snapnetwork.org)

In a speech to U.S. bishops, according to ABC News, Francis “does not specifically reference the pedophilia that has rocked the Roman Catholic Church.”

He does, however, speak of some alleged “great sacrifice" made by bishops because of the abuse and cover up crisis.

Read more
3 reactions Share

Letter to Pope Francis -- It is not a miracle that 575 of us in Milwaukee came forward

September 23, 2015

Pope Francis

Apostolic Palace

00120 Vatican City

Dear Pope Francis,

I am one of 575 victims of childhood rape, sexual assault or abuse by clergy who have worked in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee who have filed cases seeking restitution from the church in US Federal Bankruptcy Court. I am writing to you on our behalf and on behalf of our families.

Every rape or sexual assault of a child is a double act of theft: first it steals the body and then it steals the voice.

Read more
1 reaction Share