MT - Priest accused of molesting in MT - Victims respond
A Catholic priest in Wisconsin has been suspended because of allegations that he molested a child in Montana. All child sex crimes are heinous and devastating. They're even worse, however when committed by spiritual figures on innocent, vulnerable and isolated children in already-oppressed minority groups.
We applaud the brave individual who reported Fr. Druggan's abuse. We hope this move will lead to greater healing for this courageous victim. We know that it has already made kids safer.
Montana's Catholic bishops have a duty to aggressively seek out others who may have been hurt by Fr. Druggan. They should use their vast resources to beg anyone who may have seen, suspected or suffered clergy sex crimes to step forward. They should visit every church facility where Fr. Druggan worked, urging victims, witnesses or whistleblowers to speak up.
Montana's bishops will no doubt try to pass the buck and claim that this obligation falls on Fr. Druggan's religious order, not on them. But they're wrong. As shepherds of their flocks, they're responsible for the safety and healing of everyone in those flocks. It doesn't matter who signs a predator priest's paycheck - whether a bishop, a pope or a religious order head.
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.