The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
SNAP Press Release
Clergy sex victims protest at Cathedral
They’re upset at 2 newly-released Vatican documents
Both tell bishops to hide clergy sex crimes from law enforcement
NYC archbishop “continues this reckless secrecy today,” group says
SNAP to Dolan: “Do no more Irish trips, release names of NY predators first”
A 1997 letter tells Irish bishops that the Vatican has “serious reservations” about making it mandatory for bishops to report known and suspected child sex crimes to law enforcement. And 1984 letter tells a US bishop that "the files of a bishop concerning his priests are altogether private (and) that no priest's files will be sent to any lawyer or judge whatever.” Both are signed by high-ranking Vatican officials and were never disclosed publicly until this week. Both are posted at BishopAccountability.org (and copies will be available at today’s event).
The 1997 letter is signed by the pope’s official representative to Ireland, Apostolic Nuncio Luciano Storero. The 1984 letter is signed by Cardinal Silvio Angelo Pio Oddi of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Clergy and one-time head of the Roman Curia.
Even now, despite Pope Benedict’s apologies and promises, “current Vatican policy, updated last year, offers merely a nonbinding advisory — not a firm mandate — that diocesan officials should report crimes to police” (according to the New York Times). SNAP wants Dolan, as head of America’s bishops, to insist that the Vatican do this.
Dolan is on a panel traveling to Ireland to advise bishops there about clergy sex crimes. SNAP wants Dolan to postpone future travel and do what 24 other bishops have done, and post on his website, for the sake of public safety, the names, whereabouts and priestly status of child molesting clerics who are or have been in NYC.
(According to a Boston-based independent research group called BishopAccoutnabilty.org, there are 58 publicly accused NY archdiocesan child molesting clerics. The actual number of NYC area pedophile priests is likely much higher because researchers list only those clerics against whom allegations have been lodged in the public domain – in news accounts, criminal prosecution and civil lawsuits - which are extremely rare in NY because of the state’s restrictive, archaic, predator-friendly statute of limitations.)
In 2002, Baltimore became the first US diocese to disclose names. A good current example is the Philadelphia archdiocese: http://archphila.org/protection/Updates/update_main.htm. Here is a list of all the dioceses that have disclosed names: http://www.bishop-accountability.org/AtAGlance/lists.htm
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests