The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
For Immediate Release:
For More Information:
Clergy Sex Victims Want Cardinal to “Fix” Abuse Policy
They Speak Out on Anniversary of Notorious Predator’s Plea Deal
Suspended Pedophile Priests Are Starting to Re-offend, Group Says
SNAP to Top Church Officials: “Put Molesters in Remote, Secure, Treatment Centers”
Self Help Organization Discloses New Fact Sheet Showing Criminal Clergy Are Committing More Crimes
One year after Chicago’s most notorious pedophile priest pled guilty, clergy sex abuse victims will hold a news conference urging Cardinal Francis George to
-- begin strengthening the national Catholic church’s sex abuse policy,
-- force all US bishops to house predator priests in remote, secure facilities, and
-- within his own archdiocese, start putting predators in such centers.
The victims will also
-- try to hand deliver a letter to local church officials about this, and
-- disclose and discuss a new fact sheet showing that several suspended pedophile priests have recently broken the law
WHEN: Wednesday, July 2, 1:00 p.m.
WHERE: Outside the archdiocesan headquarters, 155 East Superior, A half block East of Michigan Ave
Several members of a support group called SNAP (the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) including the organization’s founder and president
On July 2, 2007, Fr. Daniel McCormack pled guilty to child molestation. He assaulted one 11 year old boy "on an almost daily basis" from Sept. 2005 until Jan. 2006. McCormack was kept in ministry for years despite several reports of child sexual abuse, including repeated written and verbal ones from a Catholic nun more than seven years ago to archdiocesan staff.
For nearly two years, despite multiple credible allegations and legal action against McCormack, George refused to order him to stay in a treatment center for pedophiles, instead letting him live with relatives. SNAP was highly critical of that move, calling it ‘reckless;’ and ‘irresponsible.’
While hundreds of the roughly 5,000 accused US pedophile priests have died or are locked up, most now quietly live unsupervised, on their own, in neighborhoods unaware of their crimes (like McCormack did).
Bishops often recruit, educate, ordain, hire, supervise, transfer, shield, and defend predator priests. So SNAP feels church officials have a moral and civic duty to do more than merely suspend them. The least bishops can do, SNAP believes, is to centrally house and oversee them in remote, secure, widely publicized and professionally-run centers so that the predators get treatment and kids are protected.
Many of the pedophiles can’t be jailed because church officials successfully concealed their crimes for so long. This further increases bishops’ obligation to monitor them.
As head of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, George has a unique opportunity to revamp the church’s five year old abuse policy. While it calls for suspending credibly accused child-molesting clerics, it doesn’t mandate that they be supervised.
SNAP’s fact sheet describes re-offending priests from Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Louisiana, Delaware, Iowa, Wisconsin, Massachusetts and Missouri.
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests