Press Release



Roster of Press Releases


The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Release
Giving Voice to Victims


For immediate release:
Thursday, August 21, 2008

Mom of recent suicide victim wants Cardinal to resign

George tried to get her son's predator priest freed early from jail

She speaks publicly for the first time & wants pedophile to stay behind bars

In October, child molesting clergyman has hearing to win his freedom from prison

Her boy took legal action years ago but archdiocese won on statute of limitations

She also wants photos & addresses of pedophile priests posted on web site


At a sidewalk news conference, a mom will release a 2 page police report about her now-deceased son's sexual abuse by a priest who Chicago Catholic officials tried to get out of jail early. She'll also and make an emotional plea to Cardinal Francis George to:

-- resign his position as head of the archdiocese,

-- disclose whether he is or has tried, secretly, to get other predator priests out of jail early,

-- promise, in writing, to never again misuse his position and power in that way,

-- publicly explain his deceit, recklessness and callousness, and

-- post on his archdiocesan web site the photos, addresses and work histories of all pedophile priests.

She'll also urge the public to contact state authorities urging them to keep the sex offender behind bars.

(At a hearing in October, he's trying to win his release from a Wisconsin mental health facility.)

WHEN: Thursday, Aug. 21, 10:30a.m.


At the SNAP office, 700 N. Green (near Halstead & Chicago) in Lower Level Conference Room. (Door code: 712)

WHO: A Chicago Catholic mom whose son was molested by a priest and killed himself in 2002 and members of a support group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (


The mom will have a photo of her son, copies of the police report, sections of the transcript of her son's testimony at Mayday's sentencing hearing and the death certificate.


Diane Houston's son John was sexually abused as a boy by Fr. Norbert Maday, a now convicted Chicago pedophile priest. Six years ago, John ended up committing suicide. Now, for the first time, Diane is speaking out about the predator and about the cardinal, who tried to win Maday's freedom.

Records released last week prove that for nearly a decade, George and his top aides made repeated, written, secret and recent efforts to get Maday out of a Wisconsin prison. (Ironically the mom's son testified in criminal proceedings to get Maday locked up.) SNAP considers George's actions "callous, deceitful and reckless" and has asked him to disclose whether he is or has tried to get other pedophile priests out of prison early. George has not responded.

In 1994, Maday was convicted of molesting two boys in Wisconsin. In 1999 (just five years into Maday's 20 year sentence), George wrote that he is "taking specific initiatives to bring about (Maday's) early release." In 2000, he wrote that he is trying "definite efforts to have a sentence reduction." In 2002, George acknowledged in writing that he had tried 'a number of avenues' for a sentence reduction or early parole, and promised he'd "keep trying." George revealed none of this to the public or Maday's victims.

For public safety, Houston supports VOTF's call for George to resign and SNAP's call to have pedophile priests' addresses, photos and work histories posted on the archdiocesan website (like the Philadelphia church officials do:

Barbara Blaine of Chicago, SNAP President & Founder 312 399 4747 cell
Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, SNAP Outreach Director 314 503 0003 cell
David Clohessy of St. Louis, SNAP National Director 314 566 9790 cell

Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests