A harrowing picture of systemic sexual abuse within the Catholic Church in Germany has emerged thanks to local reporting and the release of court documents. This news is at once shocking and all-too-expected, and we hope these continued revelations of the culture of sexual violence in the Church will drive parents, parishioners, and lawmakers to action.
The permanent removal of a Catholic priest in the Archdiocese of Edmonton was announced on Christmas Eve. We at SNAP are wondering why the cleric was allowed to remain in ministry for so many years following the serious accusations against him and if he will now finally be laicized.
Washington Hospital Chaplain Suspended by Bishop after Internal Investigation, SNAP Calls for Transparency and Law Enforcement Involvement
Yet another Catholic priest has been removed from his position in Oakland following allegations of abuse, the fifth in recent years. Now, we call for a detailed explanation from Diocesan officials regarding the allegations against the cleric. We also urge local law enforcement to get involved to secure the needed transparency that will better protect Oakland children and vulnerable adults.
Recently, an Australian Appellate Court dismissed a challenge by the Catholic Church to a lower court ruling overturning a settlement release signed by a survivor in the 1990s. The Church now faces the prospect of being sued for damages by the plaintiff, as well as by hundreds of other victims who received meager payments for serious injuries. We applaud this ruling and pray that countries around the world consider similar actions.
Hundreds of graduates from four Catholic schools in Wisconsin signed a joint letter to a local religious order, demanding answers and actions following a recent article that detailed one man’s struggle with clergy abuse that ultimately culminated in suicide. We applaud these men and women for using their voices to fight for truth and transparency and hope that their example inspires lay Catholics around the country.
Following an updated report on clergy sexual abuse from Colorado’s attorney general, the University of Colorado revoked an honorary degree it had bestowed on a Catholic priest that the report revealed had multiple allegations against him. We applaud this move and hope that other institutions follow suit for any wrongdoers that they have honored.
We are stunned to read in the recently released report from the New Zealand Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse in State Care and in the Care of Faith-Based Institutions, that up to 256,000 children, young people, and adults at risk were abused physically and/or sexually in faith-based and state-run institutions across the country from the 1960s to early 2000s. Almost 40% of all those who were housed in New Zealand institutions during that period were abused.
In an unprecedented and baffling move, all nine justices of Louisiana’s Second Circuit court have recused themselves from a case against the Diocese of Shreveport. We hope that this decision does not slow down the plaintiff's march towards healing and justice and we call on the justices involved to explain their decisions publicly.
Last March, a Catholic priest from the Diocese of Fall River who had delivered the homily at the funeral of the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy was placed on leave. Today that man has been indicted on multiple charges including rape, assault of a child under 14, and witness intimidation. We are grateful that the police and prosecutors were not intimidated by the cleric's connections and instead worked diligently to obtain this indictment. Now, we call on Diocesan officials in Fall River to use every resource at their disposal to ensure parents and parishioners are aware of the allegations so that other, possibly hidden, victims can be encouraged to come forward.
Clergy abuse survivors and supporters from SNAP gathered today at the sentencing of an abusive priest from Conroe, TX to show support for victims of clergy abuse and ensure that parishioners and the public are better informed about the extent of clergy abuse in Houston.