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The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Statement

For immediate release: Friday, March 27, 2009

Clergy sex abuse victims blast NH Catholic diocese for secrecy

Statement by David Clohessy, SNAP National Director, 314-566-9790

There is no clearer proof than these numbers that secrecy about clergy sex crimes and cover-ups remain the top priority of bishops.

Catholics should be outraged that the names of dozens of accused child molesting clerics have been kept hidden from the public while the Manchester diocese was under scrutiny by the state’s top law enforcement official. This raises two obvious and troubling questions. What other sex offending priests is Bishop McCormack protecting from disclosure. And how much more secrecy will we see in the Manchester diocese now that state oversight is ending?

If even one of alleged pedophile priests still living has sexually violated even one child while McCormack has kept silent, that is an inexcusable tragedy.

Why on earth would New Hampshire’s top Catholic staffers not promptly disclose allegations against both living and deceased alleged criminals? Why would they needlessly put kids at risk in the first instance, and keep parents in the dark, even now, in 2009?

If the accused predator is dead, for the healing of the whole church and especially of his victims, he should be publicly named. If the predator is still living, for the safety of still vulnerable children and the healing of already wounded adults, he should also be named. To do anything less is callous and dangerous.

This shows more than ever, that reforming archaic, arbitrary and predator friendly laws, so victims can expose predators in court, is the most efficient way to protect kids from sexual predators, especially those hidden by supervisors.


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