Trial Begins for Anglican Priest Accused of Abuse in Fresno
Yet another Fresno priest is accused of sex crimes and we beg those with information or suspicions about him to call police immediately.
Fr. Jesus Serna, also known as “Fr. Antonio,” was arrested in February for several alleged offenses. An Anglican cleric who from 2007 until 2017 at Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe Church in Fresno, Fr. Serna is accused of sexually assaulting at least three parishioners who came to him for counseling and advice. To use his position of power in such a way is an obvious betrayal of those who came to him in good faith for help and healing.
We hope that the victims of Fr. Serna are receiving the support and help they deserve. Sadly, dozens of parishioners showed up for a court hearing this week to support the alleged abuser instead of his victims. Such public displays in behalf of a credibly accused abuser is extraordinarily hurtful and can deter victims, witnesses and whistleblowers from stepping forward and taking steps to protect others.
We urge Anglican officials – and Fr. Serna’s more compassionate followers – to instead choose to support their priest privately out of respect for still-suffering victims and their loved ones. And we hope others who may have been hurt by Fr. Serna will come forward and make a report to police and prosecutors.
CONTACT: Dan McNevin, SNAP Board Member (firstname.lastname@example.org, 415-341-6417), Joey Piscitelli, SNAP California (email@example.com, 925-262-3699) Melanie Sakoda, SNAP Survivor Support Coordinator, (firstname.lastname@example.org, 925-708-6175), Zach Hiner, SNAP Executive Director (email@example.com, 517-974-9009)
(SNAP, the Survivors Network, has been providing support for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings for 30 years. We have more than 25,000 survivors and supporters in our network. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)