Local childhood sexual abuse victim launches support group
A Windsor woman who was the victim of childhood sexual abuse at the hands of a Catholic priest in the late 1970s is set to open a local chapter of a global organization dedicated to helping others who suffered the same fate.
Brenda Brunelle, who alleged she was abused by Rev. Michael Fallona, sued the church for $3 million three years ago and settled out of court in July.
Now she wants to offer a venue for others to find support and heal.
Brunelle has been given approval to open a Windsor chapter of the Survivours Network of those Abused by Priests — a Chicago-based organization founded in 1988. It has 60 chapters worldwide, mostly in the U.S.
“I feel with my matter resolved, I wanted to give back in some way for all the support I received over the years,” she said. “There really is no place for survivors to gather and support one another despite the high number of complaints and allegations made against the church.
“It would have been nice for me to have a support group to attend. I often wished there was such a group. As loving and supportive as my family and friends have been, it would have been nice to be with pe...