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The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Statement

For immediate release: Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Clergy abuse victims decry NY archbishops win but applaud AZ bishop's loss

Statement by David Clohessy, Executive Director 314 566 9790

Clergy abuse victims decry NY archbishops win but applaud AZ bishop's loss

We are grateful that Bishop Gerald Kicanas of Tucson lost his bid to win the presidency of the bishops conference. While it's risky to speculate, we hope his reckless promotion of a sexually troubled priest who later molested 20 boys played a role is his defeat. We also hope his shocking loss will make other Catholic officials think twice before being irresponsible with children's safety.

At the same time, however, Dolan's selection is disturbing. He's charming and affable but as bad or worse than most bishops when it comes to clergy sex crimes and cover ups. His deceitful and secretive moves to help a serial predator priest quietly resign in August are particularly upsetting. Dolan chose deception over honesty and secrecy over openness. He is showing more concern for a pedophile's feelings than concern for children's safety.

At least nine men say that a New York Monsignor Wallace Harris molested them. Dolan's predecessor suspended Harris.

But in August, Dolan let Harris resign, rather than ousting him. Dolan told only Harris' current parishioners, rather than telling the public. Dolan let Harris pretend he was stepping aside for health reasons, instead of telling the truth. And as a result, some parents and parishioners mistakenly believe Harris is innocent. That misperception, deliberately fostered by Dolan, puts kids at risk of being abused right now.

(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 22 years and have more than 10,000 members. 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, SNAPclohessy@aol.com), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747, SNAPblaine@gmail.com), Peter Isely (414-429-7259, peterisely@yahoo.com), Barbara Dorris (314-862-7688 home, 314-503-0003 cell, SNAPdorris@gmail.com)


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