Victims question new church accountability plan

Victims question new church accountability plan

SNAP: “It is big bishops investigating small ones

Group prefers independent lay body instead

It also names ‘Dangerous Dozen’ Chicago priests

Most abused elsewhere & have gotten no attention here

Survivors will also prod archdiocese over 500 still-hidden accused priests’ names


Holding signs and childhood photos at a sidewalk news conference, clergy sex abuse victims and their supporters will release a “Dangerous Dozen” list of priests publicly accused of molesting children elsewhere but who also spent time in Chicago and have escaped virtually all public attention here.

They will also ask Chicago’s Cardinal Blasé Cupich to:

---release some of the 500 accused clerics’ names that an Illinois attorney general says he and his brother bishops have not yet disclosed,

---drop his plan to have bishops investigate other accused bishops, and

---back the Springfield IL bishop’s plan for an independent lay group to do this.


Friday, March 15 at 11:15 a.m.


On the sidewalk outside the Chicago Archdiocesan Headquarters at 835 N. Rush Street (corner of Rush and Pearson)


Three-four victims and advocates who belong to a support group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (, including a Chicago man who is the group's new executive director.


1) Chicago’s Cardinal Blasé Cupich is pushing a new plan to have bishops from larger dioceses investigate abuse reports against bishops from smaller dioceses. Under this scheme, disgraced prelates like Boston’s Cardinal Bernard Law, DC’s Cardinal Donald Wuerl, DC’s Cardinal Theodore McCarrick (all three having been forced from office for their own wrongdoing), Houston’s Cardinal Daniel DiNardo and New York’s Cardinal Tim Dolan would investigate abuse accusations against their subordinates.

SNAP calls Bp. Cupich’s plan “a backward step towards the old, discredited and dangerous days of clerics-investigating-clerics.”

On the other hand, Springfield IL Bishop Thomas Paprocki – a Chicago native - wants to set up a new, independent lay panel to investigate bishops who are accused of committing sexual misdeeds.

The Vatican seems to lean towards the Cupich plan but SNAP much prefers the Paprocki proposal.

Just this week, West Virginia’s Bishop Michael Bransfield was ousted by a ‘hybrid’ process, led by an archbishop but involving lay people as well.

The real solution, SNAP says, is two-fold: first, make any sexual contact between clerics and congregants – of any age – illegal, and second, make sure that law enforcement is immediately notified and allowed to investigate reports of clergy sexual crimes, misdeeds and cover ups.

2) SNAP will also reveal its "Dangerous Dozen List," 12 publicly accused clerics who are/were in Chicago and about whom the group is most worried. The list is based on how many accusations they face, how little public attention they've received, where the alleged predator is now and other factors. Some of them molested elsewhere and were exposed elsewhere, so they have gotten little or no attention in the Chicago area, despite having spent time here.

For six of them, their last known address or assignment was in Chicago. Three were last known to be in Rome, one in Canada and one in Mexico. The remaining two were last known to be in Arizona and Louisiana.

Showing 1 comment

  • Isabel Sinton
    commented 2019-03-16 18:10:15 -0500
    Bishops investigating accused bishops? Who will investigate the big bishops? Lets call this plan ‘The Foxes guarding the Henhouse’ fiasco.

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