MN--Records about Crookston predator priest released
For immediate release: Thursday, Nov. 19, 2015
Several pages of previously-secret records about a serial predator priest who worked in the Crookston diocese and abused in the Duluth diocese have been made public. They paint an unflattering view of the Catholic church hierarchy.
He’s Fr. Charles J. Gormly. Last December, “the Diocese of Duluth included Father Gormly on its official list of clergy members who have been credibly accused of child sexual abuse,” according to a Minnesota newspaper.
The newly released records show a bishop admitting that Fr. Gormly “has a sexual problem that prompts him to molest small girls,” that “his record in Crookston was not the best,” and that Fr. Gormly was sent for “treatment” to at least two facilities.
We hope that every single person who saw, suspected or suffered clergy sex crimes or cover ups in Crookston will summon the strength to speak up. Kids are safer only when victims, witnesses and whistleblowers are courageous enough to act. Silence is tempting but it only helps wrongdoers.
And victims heal best when the truth about those who committed and concealed heinous crimes are exposed. We urge every victim in Crookston to find the courage to seek help from independent professionals, not church officials.
We call on Crookston Bishop Michael Hoeppner to personally visit the parishes where Fr. Gormly worked, begging victims, witnesses and whistleblowers to come forward. He should also use parish bulletins, church websites and pulpit announcements across the entire diocese to seek out others who may have been assaulted and are still suffering. And he should permanently post on his diocesan website the names, photos and whereabouts of every child molesting Wyoming cleric, whether alive or dead, diocesan or religious order, or admitted, proven or credibly accused. (About 30 US bishops have done this. It’s the bare minimum a bishop should do to protect the vulnerable and heal the wounded.)
The documents are available at AndersonAdvocates.com.
A native of Ireland, he was ordained in Cheyenne WY diocese, was assigned to at least five Minnesota parishes (in the dioceses of Crookston and Duluth) and died in 1968.
(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)
Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, email@example.com, SNAPclohessy@aol.com), Barbara Dorris (314-503-0003 cell, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747, 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.
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.