PA--Victims blast Philly-based nuns in abuse case
For immediate release: Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016
Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, 314 645 5915 home, firstname.lastname@example.org )
A Philadelphia-based group of nuns is refusing to admit that it ran an orphanage where a man says he was both sexually and physically abused as a child. We call on these nuns to stop ducking and dodging and start helping this victim. If they continue to stonewall, we call on Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput and New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan to insist that they step up, “come clean” and help this struggling survivor.
New York City Catholic officials insist that St. Michael’s Home for Children on Staten Island was run by the Philadelphia-based Sisters of Mercy (Mid-Atlantic branch). That’s where an unnamed man charges he was beaten and molested years ago.
But the nuns’ group refuses to confirm or deny they operated the orphanage, or even respond to a reporter’s phone call about this, leaving the victim in a painful limbo. That’s mean-spirited. And it contradicts the hundreds of promises by hundreds of Catholic officials to be “open” about child sex crimes in the church.
Shame on Sister Patricia Vetrano, the president of the Sisters of Mercy Mid-Atlantic Community (610-664-6650, http://www.sistersofmercy.org/mid-atlantic/) and on every other nun, defense lawyer or public relations staffer in the church who is stonewalling this brave, wounded victim, especially now during Pope Francis’ supposed “Year of Mercy.”
Regardless of what the nuns do or don’t do, we urge every archdiocesan staffer in Philadelphia and New York to seek out others who may have been hurt at St. Michael’s Home.
And regardless of what church officials do or don’t do, we urge every single person who saw, suspected or suffered child sex crimes and cover ups in Catholic churches or institutions – especially in Pennsylvania and New York – to protect kids by calling police, get help by calling therapists, expose wrongdoers by calling attorneys, and be comforted by calling support groups like ours. This is how kids will be safer, adults will recover, criminals will be prosecuted, cover ups will be deterred and the truth will surface.
NOTE – The nuns’ national headquarters is in Silver Spring, Maryland (301.587.0423). It’s run by Sr. Pat McDermott. Other leaders in the Sisters of Mercy Mid-Atlantic Community include Sisters Catherine Darcy, Patricia Smith, Honora Nicholson and Kathleen Keenan (vice president).
(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)
Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, email@example.com), Barbara Dorris (314-503-0003 cell,bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org)
Staten Island Catholic orphanage sex abuse victim still feels pain 70 years later
BY MICHAEL O’KEEFFE, NEW YORK DAILY NEWS, Monday, November 7, 2016, 4:00 AM
The beating took place 70 years ago, but the pain is still fresh.
When “Don” told the priest who ran St. Michael’s Home for Children on Staten Island that one of his employees had molested him repeatedly over the previous two years, the clergyman gave the boy a lecture about damaging another man’s reputation.
Then he told Don, who asked the Daily News to withhold his last name, to report to the employee who . . .
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.