MO--New KC bishop doesn’t mention abuse; Victims respond

For immediate release: Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those abused by Priests (314 566 9790[email protected])

We’re sad that Kansas City’s new bishop chose to basically ignore his diocese’s horrific track record on the biggest crisis his church faces.

This is not a good sign. Ignoring abuse and cover up won’t prevent abuse and cover up. By making this choice, he’s following the same failed pattern bishops across the world have followed for decades – essentially denying, minimizing, and thus enabling more heinous crimes against children by child molesting clerics.

Bishop James Johnston devoted “just a few minutes of a 20-minute homily to the challenge of healing the diocese,” the KC Star reported. Healing, however, is secondary. Preventing abuse and exposing wrongdoers and deterring cover ups comes first. And there’s much still to be done in this regard.

Again, we appeal to Johnston to take practical, proven steps to safeguard kids from clerics who commit abuse. We appeal to KC Catholic and citizens to insist that he do this.

(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. SNAP was founded in 1988 and has more than 20,000 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 (31-566-9790 cell, [email protected][email protected]), Barbara Dorris (314-503-0003 cell, [email protected]), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747[email protected])

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