MN- Victims blast archbishop over new deposition

For immediate release: Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314-503-0003, [email protected])

We hope that the obvious deceit and duplicitous shown by Archbishop Harry Flynn in his just-released deposition will prod police and prosecutors to more vigorously pursue corrupt Catholic officials in the Twin Cities.

According to Minnesota Public Radio, Flynn;

– “said at least 134 times that he could not remember how he handled clergy sexual abuse cases,”

– claimed “he didn't know why he refused to release the names” of credibly accused child molesting clerics,

– said he didn't “know the process for defrocking priests,” and

– “said he did not report any accusations of child sexual abuse to police and doesn't recall asking anyone else to report abuse claims either,” even though he headed the archdiocese for 13 years (as recently as six years ago) and even though there are 53 publicly accused child molesting clerics who are or have been in the archdiocese. 

He said “I don't recall” at least 15 times.

He said “I can't recall” at least 10 times.

He said “I don't remember” at least 67 times. 

He said “I can't remember” at least 40 times. 

He said “I don’t know” at least 46 times. 

Gimme a break. 

He refused to even “guess” how many predator priests got extra payments under his watch.

And he refused to say whether he thinks his successor, Archbishop John Nienstedt “should release all information on accused priests,” claiming "I don't get my views since I retired."

That may be the most absurd claim Flynn makes – that somehow retiring means you don't get to express an opinion.

Every time we read a deposition by a Twin Cities Catholic official, we become increasingly resolved to keep reaching out to victims, witnesses and whistleblowers so that more abuse and cover ups are stopped or deterred. We hope Minnesota law enforcement officials share this commitment.

(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 25 years and have more than 18,000 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 

Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, [email protected]), Barbara Dorris (314-503-0003 cell, [email protected])

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