Rome--Pope to “investigate” scandal-ridden Italian diocese

For immediate release: Thursday, Oct. 23

Statement by Barbara Dorris of SNAP (314 503 0003)

Again, Pope Francis says he’s sending an “investigator” into a scandal-ridden diocese. This is not an effective approach.

Despite making nice promises on abuse, Francis has yet to defrock, demote, discipline or even clearly denounce a single Catholic employee anywhere for refusing to call police or prosecutors about known or suspected child sex crimes. Not one.   

Until he does, he can respond when scandals reach a fever pitch by announcing another small, belated and ineffective internal church “investigation” into one of hundreds of dioceses where priests are accused of committing sexual misdeeds or crimes. But little or nothing will change. 

Let’s be honest: this is a late, tepid and almost silly response to a global crisis of sexual crimes and misdeeds by thousands of clerics who are helped by thousands of complicit church colleagues and supervisors. This is like battling Ebola with band-aids. The Pope knows better.

We applaud every single person who has reported wrongdoing in the diocese of Albenga-Imperia. Staying silent helps no one. We hope their courage will inspire others who may have seen, suspected or suffered crimes by any cleric will find the courage to speak up, get help, expose wrongdoers, protect others and start healing.

The best way to do this, however, is to call secular authorities, not church officials and to keep reporting until someone listens and acts.

(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 (314-566-9790 cell,, Barbara Dorris (314-503-0003 cell,, Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747,  

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  • Rosemary McHugh
    commented 2014-10-27 12:17:56 -0500
    I have to agree with Iain Pattison that the worldwide sexual abuse of innocent children by Roman Catholic clergy for centuries is an evil that is still not being addressed as it needs to be. As Barbara Dorris has written above: “Francis has yet to defrock, demote, discipline or even clearly denounce a single Catholic employee anywhere for refusing to call police or prosecutors about known or suspected child sex crimes. Not one.”
    I read that a female doctor who was a whistleblower in regard to the priest sexual scandals in her diocese in Italy has died. As a physician who believes the church has so much power that it has lost its soul, I am concerned that the whistleblower doctor may well have been murdered, even though the authorities report her death as a suicide.
    Jesus was very clear about the importance of protecting the innocence of children. For popes to have ignored the command of Jesus and instead to have protected the sexual predator clergy and re-victimized the victims for centuries is unconscionable and makes me wonder if they have a
    conscience at all, especially with the many suicides around the world of victims of clergy sexual abuse who gave up hope that their stories of being raped by priests, brothers, nuns, bishops, cardinals, ?popes would be believed because of the denial of the truth by the sexual predator, by his/her superior, and by the Roman Catholic hierarchy.
    As a woman, I think the popes and many of the clergy lack the normal psychosexual development of a male adult. They have no experience of an intimate relationship with a woman and no opportunity to know and be responsible for children in the way that a good dad is. The Roman Catholic Church is really in a sad state at present. Some of the actions of Pope Francis give me hope of a more mature leadership, however, I believe that Pope Francis sees women as second class and is not respecting that God created women and men at the same time and as equals in His image, as written in the first story of creation in the Bible, Genesis 1:26. When will men learn that equal partnership with women will create a healthier church and a more balanced world, as God created it to be? Sadly, men have frustrated God’s plans and fought against equality with women since the dawn of time, which has led the church to this bitter fruit of the rape of innocent children worldwide by its celibate clergy and nuns.
    Sincerely, Dr Rosemary Eileen McHugh, M.D., M.Spir.
  • Iain Pattison
    commented 2014-10-26 17:33:05 -0500
    Basically Jorge Mario Bergoglio, Pope Francis, is as atrocious as most of the previous popes going back all the way to the 4th century, when the child abuse was first noticed. The Roman Catholic System (RCS) can’t be that incompetent. Bergoglio simply doesn’t care that children have been and are being abused in the RCS and Bergoglio doesn’t care that it’s going to continue. Bergoglio is an animal, a psycho, a satan. He doesn’t fool me and never has. Bergoglio was a bad archbishop and he’s an even worse pope. All this hype about Bergoglio just goes to show how ‘satanised’ many people on this planet have become. Bergoglio is Satan’s no.1 on planet Earth.
    Earnestly, Iain Pattison.
  • Rosemary McHugh
    commented 2014-10-24 13:24:15 -0500
    Thankyou for this information, Barbara. Pope Francis needs to call on the police to investigate this scandal ridden diocese in Italy where a female doctor who was a whistleblower is reported to have committed suicide. Was it suicide or murder??? Her name was Dr Luisa Bonello.
    Sincerely, Dr Rosemary Eileen McHugh

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