The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
SNAP Press Release
For immediate release: Friday, April 8
Sex abuse victims and supporters start new self-help group
They also urge church officials to reach out, spread word
Group fears many clergy sex victims are still “trapped in guilt & shame”
Organization begs anyone who “saw, suspected or suffered” crimes to get help
Next week, a Chicago-based self-help group for men and women sexually abused in religious organizations will hold its first confidential support group meeting in Little Rock.
Leaders of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, hope to reach out to victims who are “still suffering in shame and silence and help them find healing.”
“Our mission is to safeguard the vulnerable and heal the wounded,” said David Clohessy of St. Louis, SNAP’s director. “We want every single person who’s been exploited by clerics – Protestant, Catholic, Jewish, any faith – to know that he or she isn’t alone and that recovery is possible.”
The location of the support group will not be publicly disclosed to protect the privacy of participants. Those interested in attending may call SNAP Outreach Director Barbara Dorris at 314 503 0003 or [email protected] the location.
Given the “long-standing and deeply-rooted church culture of secrecy” about abuse, SNAP believes it is critical that strong steps be taken to prod current and former church members and employees to “break their silence about actual and suspected sexual abuse.”
(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 23 years and have more than 10,000 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 SNAPnetwork.org)
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests