Former Boston Cardinal Bernard Law dies at age 86

Statement by Joelle Casteix, SNAP Western Regional Leader, (949) 322-7434, [email protected]

We are sure that many people will have mixed feelings about the death of Cardinal Bernard Law. 

Survivors of child sexual assault in Boston, who were first betrayed by Law's cover-up of sex crimes and then doubly betrayed by his subsequent promotion to Rome, were those most hurt. No words can convey the pain these survivors and their loved ones suffered.

Our only hope is that the Vatican keeps these survivors in mind when it comes time for the cardinal’s funeral. We highly doubt there is a single victim of abuse who will ever receive the same attention, pomp and circumstance by Pope Francis. Every single Catholic should ask Pope Francis and the Vatican why. Why Law’s life was so celebrated when Boston's clergy sex abuse survivors suffered so greatly? Why was Law promoted when Boston’s Catholic children were sexually abused, ignored, and pushed aside time and time again?

This celebratory focus on abuse enablers like Law must end. It is time for the Vatican to refocus on change: protecting children and those who have been hurt. 
(SNAP, the Survivors Network, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings. SNAP was founded in 1988 and has more than 25,000 members. Our website is

Contact – Joelle Casteix (949-322-7434[email protected]),  Barbara Dorris (314-503-0003[email protected]), Melanie Sakoda, (925-708-6175[email protected])

Showing 12 comments

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  • Anneke Veriska
    commented 2019-04-29 12:34:43 -0500
    Cardinal Bernard Law = the public symbol of clergy abuse scandal.
  • Ashley Walker
    posted about this on Facebook 2018-07-15 03:09:49 -0500
    Former Boston Cardinal Bernard Law dies at age 86
  • Alicia Swift
    posted about this on Facebook 2018-07-12 07:01:19 -0500
  • Alicia Swift
    posted about this on Facebook 2018-05-06 06:20:13 -0500
    Birthday Wishes
  • John Nesbella
    commented 2017-12-21 07:44:55 -0600
    Mr. Law belonged in prison, an ordinary prison, and kept in the general prison population. Even the scum of the earth in prison know that there is nothing lower than a child molester that is why molesters get special treatment from the prisoners. Mr. Law could have atoned for his sins in prison. Wait, there is something lower than a child molester-men who use their position in the church to cover-up for child molesters…. just to save their own sorry reputation. Just to save their image they damn innocent children to a life of hell. What kind of people honor men like this guy? Nothing has really changed-the party isn’t over yet.
  • Elizabeth Schmidt
    commented 2017-12-20 08:37:13 -0600
    God have mercy on his soul. One would wonder if he had one. He certainly had no conscience. I hope he lived his final days,
    praying to God for mercy and forgiveness. One of the worst offenses came from the Vatican itself. He received a promotion for the largest coverup in the history of The Roman Catholic Church; leaving victims and their families in the throes of depression and suicide.
    God forgives. I hope he put his pomposity on hold to ask for it!
    Elizabeth Schmidt
  • Timothy Lennon
    commented 2017-12-20 00:00:38 -0600
    When Cardinal Law, pustulent Prince of the Church, covered up the vile and horrific abuse of hundreds of children, he, at the same time, ensured that more children would be raped, sexually abused and assaulted. The putrid cleric Cardinal Law deserves our contempt.

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