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The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Release

Research group to probe Twin Cities Catholic archdiocese

It finds a "bizarre & troubling irregularity" in priest assignments

At least five alleged child molesting clerics get deceptive work listings

Dozens of such designations raise questions about still-hidden predators

Boston-based organization begs church employees to be “whistleblowers”

Along with SNAP, it worries about ongoing secrecy with records of pedophiles

WHAT
Holding signs and photos at a sidewalk news conference, two Massachusetts researchers and a clergy sex abuse victim will announce
-- they’ve discovered that at least five predator priests were given vague, deceptive assignments in the archdiocesan headquarters, and
-- dozens of other priests were given the same unusual designation for no clear reason, raising questions of whether they too may have been accused.

Along with SNAP, the Boston group is
-- launching a more thorough investigation into the ways in which predator priests here have been and are being moved and hidden in local church assignments and documents, and
-- urging Twin Cities archbishop to drop his on-going legal fight to keep hidden the records of local priests who are accused of molesting children, and

Finally, the two organizations will also prod current and former Catholic church members and employees to search their consciences and memories, and step forward with any information about allegations against St. Paul and Minneapolis archdiocesan priests, so that kids will be safer.

WHEN
Saturday, Dec. 19, 1:00 p.m. (Central time)

WHERE
Outside the St. Paul/Minneapolis Catholic archdiocese headquarters, 226 Summit Avenue (corner of Selby Ave.) in St. Paul MN

WHO
Two researchers and advocates who head the Boston-based BishopAccountability.org, an authoritative library and internet archive of the Catholic crisis, and a Minnesota child sex abuse victim who heads the state chapter of a support group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAPnetwork.org).

DETAILS
Until as recently as 2001, proven, admitted, and credibly accused predator priests were quietly given highly deceptive, unusual and vague job listings in the St. Paul/Minneapolis Catholic archdiocesan headquarters, a research group has discovered. The practice continued for more than two decades, and involved at least five predators and dozens of other priest who were given the same odd designation in church records (one that’s apparently never been used outside the Twin Cities). It raises questions about how many of the dozens of others may also be accused of clergy sex crimes.

The discovery was made as BishopAccountability.org is beginning to give local church officials added scrutiny. That’ because in April, the Twin Cities Catholic hierarchy succeeded in persuading Ramsey County Judge Gregg Johnson to block the public release of dozens of accused archdiocesan priests. http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/faith/43310687.html?elr=KArks:DCiUHc3E7_V_nDaycUiacyKU7DYaGEP7vDEh7P:DiUs

The five clerics who were quietly moved to the chancery office are Robert Kapoun, Gilbert J. Gustafson, Michael G. Kolar, Richard H. Jeub and Joseph Wajda.

As long as the names of accused priests are kept secret in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis and in the Diocese of Winona, the two groups contend, kids are in danger, parishioners are in doubt, the reputations of innocent priests suffer while the identifies of corrupt higher ups remain hidden.

Because the archbishop refuses to be more open, BishopAccountability.org has launched a project to examine the assignments of known accused priests in the archdiocese. In doing so, it has already identified particular positions where accused priests appear to have been ‘stored’ when accused. Some of those posts would give priests access to children and vulnerable adults, and conceal the real nature of the priests’ difficulties. The careers of other priests, besides the known accused clerics, appear to show the same patterns of assignment and concealment.

CONTACT
Terry McKiernan 508 479 9304 and Anne Barrett Doyle 781 439 5208 of BishopAccountability.org, Bob Schwiderski of SNAP 612 840 9270, David Clohessy of SNAP 314 566 9790


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