The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
Fr. Edward Schmidt, SJ
Dear Fr. Edward Schmidt, SJ:
There are many simple, common sense, long overdue steps you could take to heal the wounded and protect the vulnerable. We’ve publicly urged you to take several of them, to no avail.
But we hope you will agree with us that one step should be taken immediately: Fr. Donald McGuire belongs in a sex offenders’ treatment center so that he can get treatment and so that kids can be safe.
(He really belongs behind bars, of course, but until that happens, it’s your duty to safeguard kids right now.)
You know there are facilities like this in Missouri, Connecticut, Maryland, Canada and elsewhere that house dozens of dangerous clergy. While the centers aren’t as remote, secure, or independent as they should be, anything beats having a convicted serial predator, who molested at least two boys very recently, walking free in the third largest city in the US.
We also hope you’ll address these questions:
- Why did you wait at least five days (by your own admission) before reporting these latest, recent, serious sex abuse allegations against McGuire?
- Why did you wait roughly seven months before reporting the other recent, serious sex abuse allegations against McGuire? (Described in the August 2007 civil lawsuit filed by the now-21 year old)
- Why won’t you even answer one simple question: Are you working to defrock McGuire?
- Why do you so recklessly jeopardize the Jesuits’ assets and reputation by letting McGuire still walk free? (Think of the damage and costs that you’d face if McGuire molested a kid last month, while on your payroll as a convicted sex offender getting little or no treatment or supervision?)
Finally, we hope you will not mimic the carefully-crafted public relations maneuver employed by Cardinal George in the wake of the similarly reckless and deceitful Fr. Daniel McCormack scandal: claiming that you’re launching some review of your policies and procedures regarding child sex abuse. Kids have been molested and Catholics have been deceived by Jesuits because of the timid, self-serving actions of Jesuit officials, not because of the alleged inadequacy of some words on paper.
Policies and procedures don’t protect children. Courage and compassion protect children. And courage and compassion are clearly lacking in the Jesuit hierarchy. It can’t be created by the alleged ‘re-examination’ or ‘re-vamping’ of some ‘policy’ that’s prompted only by scandal, defense lawyers, insurance companies and spin doctors. Any such 'policy' will eventually be ignored, like so many such church policies have been for years.
We look forward to hearing from you soon.
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests