News Story of the Day
By Thomas Reese, Religion News Service, January 25, 2018
The overwhelming consensus in the media is that Pope Francis has a blind spot when it comes to sexual abuse.
He may be on the side of refugees, migrants, the sick, the poor, the indigenous and other marginalized peoples, but he just doesn't get it when it comes to victims of abuse.
The evidence for this assertion is the pope's unwavering support for Juan Barros, whom he appointed bishop of Osorno, Chile, despite accusations from victims that he witnessed and covered up abuse by the Fr. Fernando Karadima, the charismatic priest who in 2011 was found guilty by the Vatican of abusing minors in his upscale Santiago parish.
By Leonardo Blair , Christian Post, Jan 26, 2018
The Southern Baptist Convention has been added as a defendant in a lawsuit alleging that former Texas state judge and lawmaker Paul Pressler sexually abused a former Bible study student he hired as a home office assistant for decades, starting when he was just 14 years old.
The 15-million member organization was added to the lawsuit on Jan. 12 after it was initially filed in a Texas court on Oct. 18, according to the Tennessean.
America has a problem believing women and girls.
How else to explain the sickening spectacle of 156 women in a Michigan courtroom this past week facing down an abuser everyone — even their own parents — believed instead of them. The sentencing of former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar was a breathtaking display of the doubt and dismissal that so often greet women and girls when they report being molested or raped or harassed.
Burn it all down.
Because nobody who currently runs the world of elite gymnastics can be trusted. Nobody in that world would protect Larry Nassar’s victims from his horrific sexual abuse. The days of testimony in a Michigan courtroom, which culminated in the doctor’s sentencing Wednesday, have laid bare the utter and cataclysmic failures of officials at USA Gymnastics, at Michigan State, and elsewhere, to keep the children in their care from harm.
By Ed White and Mike Householder, January 24, 2017, Chicago Tribune
A former Michigan sports doctor who parlayed his reputation and personal charm into years of sexual abuse of Olympic gymnasts and other young women is set to be sentenced following the riveting statements of more than 150 victims, including one of his first public accusers who is expected to speak Wednesday.
A website launched by graduates of Presentation High School, a San Jose Catholic school for girls, details a timeline of sexual harassment and abuse allegations going all the way back to 1984
Graduates of a prestigious San Jose Catholic school for girls who say they were victims of sexual misconduct have launched a website to tell their stories in their own words.
Catholic News Agency, Jan 21, 2018, Crux
HAGATNA, Guam - An embattled archbishop in Guam has denied an allegation that he raped his nephew nearly 20 years ago, when his accuser was a teen.
Mark Apuron, nephew of Guam’s Archbishop Anthony Apuron, filed a lawsuit Jan. 10, claiming that his uncle raped him in a Church bathroom in 1989 or 1990. This is the fifth lawsuit to accuse the archbishop of sexual abuse of minors during his time as a pastor and bishop.
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.