- 2003


The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Statements

SNAP Statements Regarding
Vatican Approval of Bishop's Charter


December 16, 2002

Statement from Mike Beam,
Sacramento coordinator, SNAP

"The real change in the American catholic church this year has taken place in the pews, not on paper, and with rank and file Catholic not with their leaders. Parishioners are now even more protective of the children, skeptical of their bishops, and actively insisting on genuine openness and accountability from the church hierarchy. This healthy concern and involvement is what will fundamentally make children safer, not any set of words on a piece of paper.

At the same time legislators and prosecutors must redouble their effort to treat molestation by clergy like any other crime. While Cardinal Law is gone and this policy has been ratified, true cleansing of the church's deep wound will require still more disclosure of horrific cover-ups and a dramatically different response by bishops.

As survivors of abuse our primary goal is to protect children from further crimes. We ask Catholic parents to be more vigilant than ever, as this policy does little to protect innocent children."

Statement from Claudia Vercelotti,
Toledo coordinator, SNAP

"The Vatican has okayed a very flawed document that has already been implemented sporadically across the country. It will mean a diminished role for Catholic lay people as well as greater secrecy, and less reporting to law enforcement officials when abuse allegation arise with in the church.

Recent priest sex abuse cases in Michigan, New Jersey and Ohio, are proof of the failure of this policy."

For More Information Contact:

David Clohessy 314-645-5915, 314-566-9790
Mark Serrano 703-771-9606, 703-727-4940
Barbara Blaine 312-399-4747
Paul Steidler 703-467-5981


Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests