Roster of Statements


The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Statement

For immediate release: Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Rigali asks for prayers for victims; SNAP responds

Statement by Peter Isely of Milwaukee, national board member of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (414-429-7259, [email protected])

Asking for prayers is fine. Asking victims, witnesses and whistleblowers to call police is much better. That’s what protects kids – when adults overcome their fear and shame and help law enforcement catch criminals. That’s what Rigali should be prodding his flock to do.

Rigali should also be housing the proven, admitted and credibly accused predator priests in a secure, remote, independent treatment center so kids will be safer. And he should be joining with us in pushing to reform Pennsylvania’s archaic, predator-friendly state child sex laws so that crime victims, not bishops, can decide whether and when child molesters are publicly exposed through the open, time-tested US judicial system.

(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

Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, [email protected]), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747, [email protected]), Peter Isely (414-429-7259, [email protected]), Barbara Dorris (314-862-7688 home, 314-503-0003 cell, [email protected])


Philly cardinal asks faithful to pray for healing of church community, sex abuse victims

JOANN LOVIGLIO Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA — One day after suspending 21 priests named by a grand jury as child molestation suspects, Philadelphia Cardinal Justin Rigali (rih-GAH'-lee) is calling on the faithful to pray for healing in the church and for sexual abuse victims.

Rigali spoke to hundreds of Roman Catholics attending a lunchtime Mass at the city's basilica on Ash Wednesday, which marks the beginning of the Lenten season of penance.

On Tuesday, 21 priests whom a grand jury named as child molestation suspects were placed on leave. Last month, the district attorney's office charged two priests, a former priest and a Catholic school teacher with raping boys in the 1990s and a former church official with endangering children by covering up the crimes.

About a dozen people protested outside the cathedral during Wednesday's Mass. They say the church hasn't done enough to help victims.

Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests