NE--Victims push Lincoln bishop to act on 3 accused clerics
For immediate release: Wednesday, July 29
Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, firstname.lastname@example.org)
A Catholic cleric who spent time in Nebraska is being publicly accused for the first time of molesting a child. Two other Catholic clerics, who also worked in Nebraska, are being accused as well.
We call on Lincoln Bishop James Conley to aggressively reach out to others who may have been hurt by the three predators. We strongly suspect that there are several Nebraska adults who were assaulted as kids by these clerics and who are still suffering in shame, silence and self-blame.
A Minnesota man filed a civil lawsuit yesterday charging that he was sexually assaulted by the three clerics - Brother Roman Lawrence Fleischhacker, Brother Gabriel Guerrero and Fr. Gerald Allen Funcheon from about 1979 to 1981 when he was 15 to 17 years old.
Fleischhacker is being named publicly as a predator for the first time. Funcheon and Guerrero have been publicly accused before. (Funcheon has admitted abusing “numerous children.”)
Fleischhacker joined the Crosiers religious order in Hastings in 1949. Funcheon worked in Hastings in 1959 and 1960. Guerrero worked in Hastings in 1957 and 1958.
Bishop Conley and his colleagues will duck and dodge, pointing out that these clerics belong to a religious order. That’s a distinction without a difference. Bishop Conley’s job is to protect and help every Catholic in his diocese, no matter what type of priest, nun, brother, bishop or seminarian they were assaulted by and no matter what type of Catholic institution signs the predator’s pay check.
Bishop Conley and his staff should use their vast resources – parish bulletins, church websites and pulpit announcements – to aggressively seek out and help anyone who may have been molested by any of these clerics.
Fleischhacker passed away in 2013. The other accused clerics are still alive. More information about these clerics (and photos of two of them) can be found at AndersonAdvocates.com and BishopAccountability.org
(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)
SNAP will be Representing Clergy Abuse Survivors in Rome!
We are taking the fight to Rome and are standing up for all survivors on a world stage! From February 19-25, Board President Tim Lennon, Seattle Leader Mary Dispenza, Los Angeles Leader Esther Hatfield Miller and Austin Leader Carol Midboe will be traveling to Rome for Pope Francis' Papal Abuse Summit.
If you are a member of the media and looking to get in touch with these survivors while in Rome, click here for our media advisory and contact information. If you are interested in connecting with a survivor in the US from your area of coverage, please contact one of the SNAP leaders in the US listed below:
- East Coast/DC: Becky Ianni (SNAPvirginia@cox.net, 703-801-6044)
- Midwest/Chicago: Zach Hiner (email@example.com, 517-974-9009)
- Midwest/St. Louis: David Clohessy (firstname.lastname@example.org, 314314-566-9790)
- West Coast / San Francisco: Melanie Sakoda (email@example.com, 925-708-6175)
If you are looking to help spread the word about the importance of this summit and for survivors to be heard, add your voice to the conversation on social media using the hashtag #PBC2019. Be sure to follow SNAP on twitter and Facebook and share our posts, add your comments, and let the world know that we are watching!Learn More