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The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Release

Clergy sex abuse group wants probe into sex abuse by nuns

New Vatican investigation is headed by Toledo’s Catholic bishop

But it focuses on “doctrinal issues,” not sexual misconduct & cover up

SNAP wants Blair to broaden his inquiry or push Rome for a separate one

Those molested by nuns are “overlooked” & “feel isolated” self help group says

Clergy sex abuse victims and supporters will pass out flyers as parishioners leave mass asking them to prod Toledo’s top Catholic official to
-- expand his nation-wide, Vatican-inspired investigation into American nuns to include how hundreds of groups of sisters handle child sex abuse reports, or
-- prod his Vatican supervisors to launch a separate inquiry into abuse by nuns.

They’ll also urge anyone who was molested by a nun to come forward, call police, get help, expose predators and start healing.

TODAY, August 2, 11:45 a.m.

Outside the Rosary Cathedral, 2535 Collingwood Boulevard

Two or three victims and supporters who belong to a support group for clergy sex abuse victims called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (, including a Toledo native who now lives in Chicago and is the organization’s founder and long time director

VISUALS: Participants will hold signs and pass out flyers as parishioners leave mass. (View flyer)

In April, Toledo Bishop Leonard Blair was tapped by the Vatican to lead an investigation into a group representing 95% of American nuns. The probe is expected to focus largely on “doctrinal issues,” but SNAP wants it expanded to include sexual abuse and cover ups by nuns, or a separate investigation launched.

SNAP believes Blair has the clout and obligation to prod the church hierarchy in Rome to broaden his inquiry. The group has been and remains highly critical of how Blair has handled pedophile priest cases in his own diocese. Still, it worries that there’s virtually no data on how extensive sexual abuse by nuns is, and feels that a self-survey would provide at least a ‘starting point’ for education and reform.

Later this month, Blair is expected to send surveys to almost 400 institutes of nuns across the country. It could easily be changed to include questions about sexual abuse.

Alternatively, SNAP feels Blair could prod Vatican officials to insist on a separate inquiry into child molestation by Catholic sisters. SNAP has been contacted by several hundred men and women who report having been sexually violated by American nuns.

The nation's largest group of nuns, the Leadership Council of Women Religious (LCWR), based in Silver Spring, MD, meets later this month in New Orleans. For several years, SNAP has tried to dialogue with LCWR about abuse by nuns, with little success.

In June, a group of Irish nuns publicly apologized for abuse perpetrated there by its members.

Barbara Blaine of Chicago, SNAP Founder and President 312 399 4747
Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, SNAP Outreach Director, 314 862 7688

Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests