The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
SNAP Press Statement
For immediate release: Friday, August 28, 2009
Bishop asks US Supreme Court to keep sex secrets; Abuse victims respond
Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, national director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790 cell, 314 645 5915 home)
(Today the Bridgeport catholic bishop formally appealed to the full US Supreme Court to keep almost 13,000 pages of pedophile priest records from being made public.)
Is there any legal loophole or delaying tactic – no matter how far-fetched or expensive or cynical – that he won’t try to exploit to protect himself and his complicit colleagues like Cardinal Egan? What if Lori loses again? Will he appeal to The Hague? When will Bridgeport Catholics say "enough" and direct their hard-earned dollars to institutions that protect kids rather than endanger kids? How many more hundreds of thousands will Catholics will be forced to pay to protect the reputations of a few corrupt clerics?
These records may not reveal the new names of predator priests. They will, however, give new names of church co-workers and supervisors who deliberately and callously ignored or concealed suspicions or knowledge of child felonies. Some of these church employees are no doubt still in positions of power, where they can again ignore or conceal child sex crimes. Having escaped any disclosure or consequences thus far, why wouldn't they again hide crimes to protect the church hierarchy? When wrong-doing goes unpunished, wrong-doing is essentially rewarded and repeated. That is one of the most obvious reasons tens of thousands of kids were violated by thousands of priests.
Despite such widespread crimes and cover ups, not a single church official has, or likely ever will, be punished. The least our justice system can do is publicly expose the supposed spiritual leaders who acted so recklessly, deceitfully in the past and continue acting recklessly and deceitfully even now.
Connecticut citizens deserve to know exactly who on the church payroll helped intimidate victims, threaten witnesses, destroy evidence, fabricate alibis, mislead police, stone-wall prosecutors and enable child molesting clerics to molest again.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the nation’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 21 years and have more than 8,000 members across the country. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)
Contact David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, 314-645-5915 home), Peter Isely (414-429-7259) Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747), Barbara Dorris (314-862-7688)
Conn. diocese wants Scalia to look at case
By JOHN CHRISTOFFERSEN Associated Press Writer
Updated: 08/28/2009 04:16:19 PM EDT
NEW HAVEN, Conn.—A Roman Catholic Diocese in Connecticut which has fought for years to prevent the release of documents generated by lawsuits against priests for alleged sexual abuse wants conservative Justice Antonin Scalia to take up the case.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Tuesday ruled the documents cannot remain sealed until the full court decides whether to review the case. On Friday, attorneys for the Bridgeport diocese asked that the stay issue be reconsidered by Scalia.
The Survivor's Network of Those Abused by Priests criticized the move, saying it smacked of "desperation and favoritism."
An attorney for the diocese said Scalia was selected because he ruled as an appeals judge on one of the central issues in the case related to the definition of court documents.
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests