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The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Statement

For immediate release: Thursday, October 15, 2009

Sex abuse victims respond to new Pueblo Catholic bishop

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, outreach director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 503 0003)

(NOTE: Fr. Isern of the Miami archdiocese has been named as Catholic bishop of Pueblo)

Tafoya’s tenure as bishop has been marred by his silence while Marianists fought victims abused by Brother William Mueller in the Pueblo diocese tooth and nail. His successor inherits pending child sex abuse and cover up lawsuits against Fr. Andrew Burke and Fr. William Groves. We hope Bishop Isern will respond as a compassionate shepherd, not a cold-hearted CEO.

Isern’s current employer, the Miami archdiocese, continues to be reckless and deceitful regarding clergy sex crimes and cover ups. So though we don't know much about Isern himself, we can't feel comfortable with a Miami archdiocesan cleric being promoted to this post.

Sadly, the culture of secrecy and cover up in Catholic dioceses is long-standing and tenacious. No matter who heads a particular diocese, it will take continued and increased vigilance and skepticism and courage to protect the vulnerable and heal the wounded.

Regardless of who is bishop, we hope that anyone who saw, suspected or suffered clergy sex crimes or other misdeeds will continue to come forward, call police, protect others and start healing.

(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 9,000 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)


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