NM--Bishop must stop secrecy
For immediate release: Wednesday, November 26
Bishop James Wall must stop the secrecy and disclose immediately what he knows about the suspected crimes and misdeeds of the Rev. Ravi Kiran. Kiran, originally from India, worked at St. Anthony’s Mission on the Pueblo of Zuni.
We urge every single person who may have seen, suspected or suffered child sex crimes or cover ups by Kiran to call police and prosecutors. Known or suspected child sex crimes or cover ups should be reported to the independent professionals in law enforcement, not to biased, secretive Catholic bureaucrats.
When the Rev. Ravi Kiran, a visiting Catholic priest from India, abruptly left his mission assignment in the Pueblo of Zuni on Oct. 9, he left behind a number of allegations and unanswered questions. The community has been left with more questions than answers by the Diocese of Gallup, the Zuni tribe and federal law enforcement officials.
There have been allegations of abuse of a girl and the misuse of church funds. Repeated questions from parishioners and the media have gone unanswered despite multiple requests and months of tension within the parish. The Rev Kevin Finnegan, the chancellor for the archdiocese assured parishioners the diocese was investigating Kiran’s abrupt departure and promised them answers, That was two months ago.
The Diocese of Gallup has filed for bankruptcy. Kiran failed to publicize the diocese’s bar date which allows clergy sex abuse victims to be included in the proceedings.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 25 years and have more than 18,000 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)
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.