MN - What’s next in MN clergy sex scandal? SNAP predicts...
For immediate release: Friday, Dec. 6, 2013
David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)
What next in the Twin Cities Catholic abuse and cover up scandal? Here are some predictions and hopes.
We predict that more victims across Minnesota will:
--step forward asking “Why isn’t the cleric who hurt me on the newly-disclosed list?” and
--push for more disclosure and other prevention steps as part of their civil settlements.
We predict that more judges – across Minnesota and the country – will be willing, for the safety of children, force other bishops to disclose names of other predators. (This is the first time a court has ordered a bishop to make predators’ names public.)
We hope that law enforcement officials will use their “bully pulpits” to prod victims, witnesses and whistleblowers to contact secular officials, not church officials, with information or suspicions about clergy sex crimes, especially by the seven or eight credibly accused clerics who were “outed” yesterday.
We predict that Archbishop John Nienstedt will:
--continue to write about this disclosure as if it were a voluntary move on his part, instead of making it clear that he was forced to do this, and
--continue distancing himself from his predator priests. (Most of the clerics listed yesterday are still priests. But Nienstedt listed them with no titles, as if to suggest that they no longer are.)
We hope, but do not expect, that Nienstedt will:
--explain why he kept the names of six or seven credibly accused child molesting clerics for years and years,
--turn over every scrap of information he has about all current and former Twin Cities predator priests, nuns, seminarians, brothers and lay employees to law enforcement immediately,
--personally visit each parish where predator priests worked – starting with the seven or eight new names – and beg victims, witnesses and witnesses to call police, and
--give all Twin Cities child molesting clerics an ultimatum: “Move to a remote, secure treatment facility in 30 days or we’ll cut off your salary, health care and other benefits.”
We hope, but do not expect, that other bishops across the country will:
--see that the tide is gradually turning and that the excessive and unhealthy deference they’ve been given, by Catholics and courts, is waning
--start honoring their promises to be “open and transparent” by voluntarily disclosing the names, photos, whereabouts and work histories of every proven, admitted and credibly accused child molesting cleric and permanently posting this information on their diocesan and parish websites.
Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, SNAPclohessy@aol.com), Barbara Dorris (314-862-7688 home, 314-503-0003 cell, SNAPdorris@gmail.com), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747, SNAPblaine@gmail.com), Bob Schwiderski, SNAP Minnesota director (952 471 3422, 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.