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The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Release

Sex abuse victims and advocates blast bishop

Bridgeport prelate keeps accused priests in ministry

Church paid $40,000 yet claims allegations aren’t ‘credible’

Groups urge Lori to disclose records of parish that had 8 predators

He should also stop hiding hundreds of pages of records, SNAP & VOTF say

Diocese should also investigate and discipline staffers who concealed crimes, they say

WHAT
Holding signs and photos at a sidewalk news conference, clergy sex abuse victims and advocates will prod Bridgeport's Catholic bishop to drop his legal fight to keep hidden
-- 1,488 pages of long-secret records about pedophile priests, and
-- 126 boxes of records about 8 alleged predators at one CT parish.

They will also urge the bishop to
-- oust two priests from ministry who have been accused of molesting boys, and
-- publicly identify and discipline current church staffers who mishandled child sex abuse reports against priests.

WHEN
Wednesday, Dec. 16, 1:00 p.m.

WHERE
Outside the Bridgeport Catholic diocese headquarters, 238 Jewett Ave. (corner of Conner St) in Bridgeport

WHO
1-2 clergy sex abuse victims who belong to a support group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAPnetwork.org) and a local leader of a Catholic reform group called VOTF (Voice of the Faithful)

WHY
Last Friday’s Hartford Courant disclosed that two men were each paid $20,000 after reporting they were molested as kids by two Bridgeport diocesan clerics who are still in ministry: Msgr. William Genuario and Msgr. Frank Wissel. http://www.courant.com/news/priest-abuse/hc-bridgeport-enuario.artdec11,0,2184988.story.

Last Friday’s Connecticut Post disclosed that another man had also reported to church officials that Genuario had molested him too. http://www.connpost.com/ci_13979070

Despite this, Bridgeport Bishop William Lori never suspended either cleric, kept silent about the allegations and the payoffs, and lets both men work in the diocese today. In a statement last Friday, Lori said “Neither has been the subject of a credible allegation of sexual abuse of a minor.” (Then why, SNAP and VOTF ask, quietly pay the accusers $40,000?)

And despite a 2002 allegedly binding national church sex abuse policy mandating “openness” in clergy sex cases, Lori is withholding 1,488 documents he determined at the last minute were ‘privileged.’ He’s also in court on a separate case trying to keep secret 126 boxes of records about 8 alleged predator priests who worked at St. Theresa’s parish in Trumbull. http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/26/nyregion/26abuse.html.

SNAP and VOTF want Lori to 1) suspend both priests, pending a thorough investigation, 2) fully explain why he kept secret about the allegations and why he recklessly lets both accused clerics keep working, 3) name and discipline any staffers who ignored or concealed clergy sex crimes, and 4) stop his expensive legal battles to hide records about predator priests, so that kids will be safer, victims can recover, and Catholics can know the truth.

CONTACT
John Lee 203 259 9642 work or 203 689 1016 cell
Gail Howard 203 644 0387 cell or 203 846 2774 home
David Clohessy 314 566 9790 cell


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


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