SNAP Responds to Allegations of Clergy Abuse Reported in the Diocese of Charlotte
When adults who suffered, saw or suspected sexual abuse call law enforcement, children are safer. We commend Doug Dickerson for having the strength, wisdom and compassion to protect others by reporting the priests – Fr. Damion Lynch and Fr. Cornell Bradley – that he says abused him as a child.
However, we cannot help but wonder if at least one of these two priests might already be behind bars if church officials in Charlotte had turned the allegations against them over to law enforcement in the 1990s. Catholic officials in Charlotte have confirmed that they knew of allegations against Fr. Lynch at that time. We call on them today to detail what steps were taken against Fr. Lynch when those allegations were first brought forward.
Last month in Rome, more than 100 of the world’s highest-ranking Catholic officials bent over backwards to talk a great game about protecting children, healing victims and cooperating with law enforcement. Now, Bishop Peter Jugis has a chance to prove that those were not just empty words.
Bishop Jugis can start by personally visiting each church or school where these two priests worked, begging anyone with suspicions or information to call police immediately. He can also do what half of all US bishops have done: post a list of all accused child molesting clerics in his diocese.
CONTACT: Zach Hiner, Executive Director (firstname.lastname@example.org, 517-974-9009)
(SNAP, the Survivors Network, has been providing support for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings for 30 years. We have more than 25,000 survivors and supporters in our network. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)