Rome--Cardinals should question O’Malley’s abuse record

For immediate release: Wednesday, Feb. 11

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

Thursday, Boston Cardinal Sean O'Malley speaks to prelates from across the globe about abuse. We hope that at least a few of those church officials will question O’Malley about his own track record on this crisis.

Several years ago, US Catholic officials found that in O’Malley’s archdiocese 64 out of 295 parishes refuse to teach abuse prevention to kids. O'Malley has had six years to comply with this church mandate. But he didn’t.

So the Pope’s abuse point man has been deemed in violation of the US bishops’ vague and weak national abuse policy.   

The researchers at are the best source of information on O’Malley. They’re briefly detailed six ways in which O’Malley mishandled abuse:

Just four days ago, we criticized O’Malley for disingenuous comments about the scandal:

Just three weeks ago, we criticized O’Malley for being lenient with three of his staff in an alleged abuse case:

We could go on and on and on. Sadly, it’s easy for O’Malley to posture as a reformer when few look closely at how he actually deals with abuse.

O’Malley reminds us of retired Twin Cities Archbishop Harry Flynn. For years, even decades, Flynn claimed to be - and was held out by other church officials to be – a “pioneer” on abuse. Last year, a journalist with Minnesota Public Radio investigated Flynn’s actual track record. She found that his behavior and his reputation differed radically and that rather than deal with abuse, he primarily hid it.

We believe a similar independent and in-depth look at O’Malley’s actions on abuse is long overdue and would help people understand that his purportedly progressive stance on this scandal is largely fiction.

(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We were founded in 1988 and have 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, [email protected], Barbara Dorris 314-503-0003, [email protected], Barbara Blaine 312-399-4747, [email protected]  

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