MO--New KC bishop doesn’t mention abuse; Victims respond
For immediate release: Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015
We’re sad that Kansas City’s new bishop chose to basically ignore his diocese’s horrific track record on the biggest crisis his church faces. http://www.kansascity.com/news/local/article42994710.html
This is not a good sign. Ignoring abuse and cover up won’t prevent abuse and cover up. By making this choice, he’s following the same failed pattern bishops across the world have followed for decades – essentially denying, minimizing, and thus enabling more heinous crimes against children by child molesting clerics.
Bishop James Johnston devoted “just a few minutes of a 20-minute homily to the challenge of healing the diocese,” the KC Star reported. Healing, however, is secondary. Preventing abuse and exposing wrongdoers and deterring cover ups comes first. And there’s much still to be done in this regard.
Again, we appeal to Johnston to take practical, proven steps to safeguard kids from clerics who commit abuse. We appeal to KC Catholic and citizens to insist that he do this.
(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 (31-566-9790 cell, firstname.lastname@example.org, SNAPclohessy@aol.com), Barbara Dorris (314-503-0003 cell, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747, email@example.com)
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.