Roster of Statements


The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Statement

For immediate release: Friday, December 11, 2009

US Clergy sex abuse victims respond to Pope’s Ireland comments

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)

The Pope professes to be "outraged" by horrific, extensive clergy sex crimes and cover ups in Ireland. That's what his predecessor claimed about horrific, extensive clergy sex crimes and cover ups in the US.

But claims of 'outrage' protect no one. Nor will a letter from Rome to Ireland.

Instead of writing a letter, we hope the Pope takes action. Action, not words, protect innocent kids and heal wounded victims.

Specifically, we oppose a papal letter, a papal apology, a papal visit and/or a papal meeting with victims. Such moves are purely symbolic and only lead to premature complacency and assumptions of reform.

If the Pope genuinely cares, we urge him to
- oust the Irish papal nuncio who ignored a request to help with the Irish government’s abuse probe,
- oust complicit church officials who ignored or concealed suspicions and knowledge of crimes,
- discipline Vatican staffers who ignored the government’s request for help and records, and
- push for the launching of similar investigations into other dioceses, in Ireland and across the world.

Symbolic gestures are damage control and public relations, nothing more. Vulnerable children and suffering adults need and deserve real reform.

Pope will write letter to Irish Catholics on abuse


VATICAN CITY — Pope Benedict XVI says he is "deeply disturbed and distressed" by a child sex-abuse scandal in Ireland and will write a letter to Catholics there on the church's response.

Benedict met Friday with senior Irish clergy in the wake of a report detailing the abuse.

The report was issued last month after a government-ordered investigation into the Dublin Archdiocese. It found that the church shielded more than 100 child-abusing priests from the law.

The Vatican said after the 90-minute talks that the letter to the faithful of Ireland "will clearly indicate the initiatives that are to be taken in response to the situation."

Copyright © 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests