MN--Head of support group holds news conference
Head of support group holds news conference
He’ll react to charges against Catholic archdiocese
And he’ll beg other victims to “keep stepping up and speaking up”
SNAP: Choi should take church officials’ passports so they can’t flee
Holding signs and childhood photos at a hastily-called sidewalk news conference, a Twin Cities clergy sex abuse victim who heads a support group will discuss the new criminal charges against the local Catholic archdiocese
TODAY, Friday, June 5 at 4:15 p.m.
On the sidewalk outside the Chancery, Archdiocese of St. Paul & Minneapolis, 226 Summit Avenue, Saint Paul, MN
At least two individuals, including Frank Meuers, Minnesota SNAP leader, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (952-334-5180, email@example.com)
Meuers says “The demand for justice has finally overridden the ploy of secrecy, and now charges have at last been filed. We now ask anyone with any information of abuse to come forward at once, and help facilitate this movement from silence to openness, and we congratulate the county attorney and his staff for heeding the persistent cries of so very many abused people of this diocese.”
Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, SNAP Outreach Director of SNAP, says “We’re glad the Twin Cities archdiocese is being charged. But the credit goes to brave Minnesota victims who have stepped forward and exposed wrongdoing. Their civil lawsuits, police reports and courage has made this happen.
We believe this is the first time in more than a decade that a Catholic diocese has faced criminal charges.
Catholic officials almost always hire expensive lawyers, exploit every technicality and fight bitterly to protect their clerical careers. We predict that will happen here.
So it’s not time for complacency. Every single man and woman has a moral and civic duty to call prosecutors with what they know or suspect about Twin Cities clergy sex crimes or cover ups, no matter how seemingly insignificant or long ago.
By passing a three year civil window, lawmakers gave victims hope. Victims then filed suits and police reports. And now, a big and powerful Catholic institution faces charges. That’s not ideal but its progress.
The cover ups in the Twin Cities are so widely-documented at this point, we believe John Choi had little choice but to pursue the church hierarchy. We’re glad he did. But a charge is not a conviction. So it’s crucial that current and former church staff and members overcome their fears, pick up the phone and call the law, whether they’re victims, witnesses or whistleblowers.”
Meuers will discuss his own abuse at the hands of a Minnesota priest and will take questions.
Barbara Dorris (314 503 0003, SNAPdorris@gmail.com)
David Clohessy (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)
Verne Wagner (218-340-1277, firstname.lastname@example.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.