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The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Release
Giving Voice to Victims

Activists challenge US bishops about Irish abuse

They release list of 12 "troubled Catholic orphanages and boarding schools" here

Concern is spurred by recent 'devastating report' of 'widespread crimes'

Organizations blast American prelates’ “deafening silence” on Irish abuse report

US church hierarchy knows of similar horrors in schools here, two groups charge

WHAT
After a sidewalk news conference, clergy sex abuse victims and their supporters will try to hand-deliver a letter to top Catholic officials urging them to:
-- admit the "hidden crisis" of child abuse in Catholic orphanages, reform schools, minor seminaries, and boarding schools in the US,
-- force Irish church leaders to give them the names of clerics who molested in Ireland and were sent to the US, and
-- start reaching out to parishioners in US who may have been assaulted by clerics from Ireland.

The group will also release a new list by BishopAccountability.org of 12 US Catholic residential institutions where predator priests worked or where child sex abuse has been reported. The list can be seen online at: http://www.bishop-accountability.org/institutions/.

WHEN
Wednesday, June 17, 1:00 p.m.

WHERE
On the sidewalk outside the San Antonio Hyatt Regency hotel, where hundreds of Catholic bishops are holding their annual spring/summer meeting

WHO
Four or five clergy sex abuse victims and a Texas mom whose teenage son was molested in a San Antonio high school seminary – one of many Catholic residential schools where child abuse has been documented. They belong to a support group called SNAP.

WHY
For weeks, Ireland has been in turmoil over a new government report there which documents decades of pervasive and systematic child abuse in church-run orphanages. Although the report has shocked Catholics worldwide and generated hundreds of headlines, no American bishop has issued a public statement about the scandal.

“The silence of our church leaders has been deafening,” said Terence McKiernan, BishopAccountability.org’s founder and president, “especially given that this news affects millions of Irish-American Catholics in a personal way.”

“As a result of our recent research, we conclude that the Irish report strikes too close to home. Are American bishops staying mum because they fear examination of their own orphanages and residential schools?” McKiernan asked. (At St. John's School for the Deaf in Wisconsin, for instance, the boarding school’s longtime director, Father Lawrence Murphy, is believed to have raped and abused as many as 200 boys there. Two Oregon orphanages employed Fr. Maurice Grammond, who is accused of abusing 50 children.)

In releasing the list of 12 orphanages and residential schools, McKiernan’s group is launching a major research initiative to create a database of all the US Catholic orphanages, boarding schools, minor seminaries, and reform schools where children allegedly were abused or that were staffed by credibly accused nuns, brothers, or priests.

In their letter to the US bishops, SNAP (the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) and BishopAccountability.org are urging each bishop to release names of all Irish abusers and other credibly accused child molesters – priests, brothers, and nuns – who have worked at children’s residential institutions in his diocese.

Contact:
Terence McKiernan, BishopAccountability.org Co-Director and Founder, 508-479-9304
Anne Barrett Doyle, BishopAccountability.org Co-Director, 781-439-5208
Barbara Garcia Boehland, SNAP San Antonio Director 210-725-8329, 210-621-2177
David Clohessy, SNAP National Director 314-566-9790


Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
www.snapnetwork.org
 


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