- 2003


The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Statements

Statement Regarding
Cincinnatti Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk

September 18, 2003

We are here today for two reasons: the archbishop's severe mishandling of two child molesters: Monsignor Daniel Pater and Father David Kelley.

The archbishop owes Catholics and victims an explanation.
The archbishop owes us an apology.
And the archbishop needs to remove these two abusers immediately and permanently.

Monsignor Pater's case is particularly troubling.
Here's a man who has admitted molesting a girl, at least twice, once years ago when the crime took place, and again recently to a Dallas Morning News reporter. Yet his career skyrockets. He leaves the country. He goes to the Vatican. He is promoted. He is appointed to a high post in India, where kids are even more vulnerable. And just days before his crime is exposed by a major US newspaper, he volutarily steps down and returns to Ohio.

Father Kelley's case is nearly as troubling.
Here's a man who was removed by church officials for abuse allegations. Allegedly, he is told to stay away from children. But not a single archdiocesan employee bothered to do one bit of follow up. So a dangerous man again finds a position of access and authority over vulnerable youngsters, counseling them.

We've endured decades of suffering. We've endured 19 months of horrific disclosures and exposes. Has this archbishop learned nothing from all this pain?

With both of these molesters, the archbishop has made vague promises to have a panel of lay Catholic volunteers look into these cases sometime in the future.
But vague promises do not keep kids safe.
Decisive action keeps kids safe.
Decisive action is what Catholics and victims deserve.
Sadly, decisive action in this archdiocese has been sorely lacking.

The past cannot be undone. No one can magically erase the pain, the stolen years, the shattered innocence we have experienced.

But a compassionate, pastoral leader CAN stop rubbing salt into our wounds.
A compassionate, pastoral leader CAN start telling the truth, the whole truth.
A compassionate, pastoral leader CAN start protecting vulnerable kids NOW.

That is what we need and expect this archbishop to begin doing.

He can start today, by offering a full, public accounting of the mistakes, his mistakes, that have allowed these two dangerous men to remain around children.

He can start today, by publicly apologizing for these mistakes.

And he can start today, by immediately and permanently removing Pater and Kelley from ministry.

Thank you.

SNAP leaders
Bob Fricke of Cincinnatti
Kay Montggomery of Lexington 859 539 2116 cell
David Clohessy of St. Louis 314 566 9790 cell, 314 645 5915





Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests