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The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Release

Clergy sex abuse victims challenge Pope & archbishop

SNAP: “Do something about 2 St. Louis predators working overseas”

One is in Bangladesh, another is in Rome; Settlements paid out on each

Church admits 1 accusation is “credible” & that priest was “involved” with 2 women too

Yet priest is still on the payroll in the literal and figurative ‘power center’ of Catholicism

WHAT
Holding signs and childhood photos at sidewalk news conference, clergy sex abuse victims will publicly urge the Pope to
-- take action against two credibly accused child molesting St. Louis clerics who now work overseas, and
-- set up, in the next two weeks, an international church registry of proven, admitted and credibly accused predator priests who have been sent or have moved from one nation to another.

They will also prod
-- the St. Louis archdiocese to disclose the whereabouts of two other credibly accused predator priests who are believed to be in other countries now, and
-- church staff, here and in Rome, to work harder to monitor the clerics and find and help others who were hurt by them.

WHEN
Wednesday, April 7 at 1:15 p.m.

WHERE
Outside the US headquarters of the Marianists, a Catholic religious order, 4425 West Pine (east of Kingshighway) in St. Louis’ Central West End

WHO
Two-three members of support group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, SNAPnetwork.org, including a man who is the organization’s long time director

WHY
Controversy erupted yesterday over a fugitive predator priest who oversees dozens of Catholic schools in India while evading US criminal authorities on charges that he molesting two Minnesota girls. The case is raising more questions about how the Vatican handles clergy sex crimes. And it’s causing SNAP to push for action against four former St. Louis clerics, all accused of child sexual abuse, two of whom now still work for the church overseas.

Fr. William A. Christensen heads a non-profit in Bangladesh and Fr. Charles H. Miller works in Rome. Both belong to a St. Louis based religious order called the Marianists. SNAP is worried that both may be molesting kids now and is upset that church officials have said and done little to warn others about the clerics or disclose their findings about the allegations against them.

Two months ago, a Post Dispatch about a Bangladesh service project (called the Institute for Integrated Rural Development) mentioned that Christensen is still working there, despite a civil lawsuit that was filed against him in 2002 by a former St. Louisan, Michael Powel.

http://www.stltoday.com/stltoday/news/columnists.nsf/debpeterson/story/0913865DD258C5EC862576B300838991?OpenDocument

And last year, the San Antonio (TX) Express News reported that Miller “was forced to resign two years ago after a (credible) claim that he sexually abused (a St. Louis teenager), but was sent to his superiors to live and work for the church in Rome.

http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/religion/Priest_was_ousted_at_St_Marys_in_sex_case.html

For five years, Christensen’s church supervisors refused to accept service for him, so the lawsuit languished. In 2007, while at a fundraiser in downtown St. Louis, he was finally served. But his accuser died of brain cancer and his family received a small settlement last year.

Two other local priests who are accused of child sex abuse – Fr. Kevin Hederman and Fr. Jose Duran - are believed to be oversees. Hederman recently worked in Belize and Duran is believed to have returned to his native Colombia. Both are archdiocesan clerics.

Miller taught at St. Louis University and a Catholic college in Texas. Later, he organized tours in Europe and the Middle East. Christensen’s accuser was represented by St. Louis attorney Joe Bauer and Connecticut attorney Helen McGonigle. He also taught at Chaminade and McBride high schools in St. Louis, according to the Post Dispatch.

http://www.bishop-accountability.org/assign/Miller_Charles_H_SM.htm

CONTACT - David Clohessy 314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com


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