A message from SNAPDFW’s facilitator, Lisa Kendzior
Acknowledge your courage
It takes courage to acknowledge that we’ve been abused and it is not easy to even admit it to ourselves. Just browsing this website is a big step.
Know that you are not alone!
If you’ve been victimized by clergy, please know that you are not alone. You can get better. You can reach out to others who’ve been hurt just like you have.
Together, we can heal one another.
Pope quickly accepts bishop's resignation only days before child abuse report that may implicate diocese is to be publishedThis is one to watch over the next few days.
A Catholic bishop in Ireland stepped down yesterday just six days before child sex abuse audits into two dioceses where he served are due to published.
Bishop of Derry Seamus Hegarty’s resignation on health grounds was accepted by Pope Benedict a mere two weeks after offering it. He left his post immediately.
Read the full story in the Irish Independent ...
Read 'Bishop quits over health days before abuse audits' ...
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'No one has suffered more' in sexual abuse crisis than Catholic church, claims head bishop; victim advocates disagreeA Reuters news service article quotes the head of US Roman Catholic bishops, Timothy Dolan, as saying that the child sex abuse scandal at Penn State University 'opens a wound' within the church. "No one has suffered more," claims the Catholic leader of priests.
The victims advocacy community -- with all respect that may or may not be due -- would point out to the bishop that the victims of abuse are the ones who have been wounded, raped and sodomized by Catholic priests and attacked by bishops and their high-priced lawyers for years -- a fact dramatized by these very statements.
It is not the Catholic hierarchy that has been victimized. The bishops, like Dolan, in that "community" continue to provide and protect the criminal perpetrators of that abuse. You, Mr. Dolan, and your kind, are not the victims here.
According to victims advocate Kristine Ward of SNAPDFW's sister group, the National Survivors Advocacy Coalition (NSAC), the purpose of Dolan's comments were to opportunistically deflect attention away from his colleagues and underlings in the Roman hierarchy, which systemically perpetuates the environment of abuses, and systematically denies it and shields the guilty.
Once again, SNAPDFW asks the question we've asked so many times before:
Just how outrageous does outrageous have to get!?
Read the Reuters news article "Penn State scandal "opens wound" in Catholic Church" ...
Read Kristine Ward's NSAC Editorial "The Gall of It" ... Read More...
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SNAP National Director David Clohessy speaks about Penn State sex scandal and parallels to priest sexual abuse
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Penn State students, fans collect donations for ChildHelp, making support of victims the focus of the sex scandalSome 400 Penn State students held canisters on Saturday at Beaver Stadium asking game day fans to make a donation.
They collected money for ChildHelp -- a non-profit organization which specializes in the prevention and treatment of child abuse. "A lot of alumni (are) coming by and appreciate what we're doing and they know that this is what the student body is really about," said Penn State University Junior Ian Golden.
"... this is what the student body is really all about ..." - PSU Junior Ian Golden
Golden formed a group on facebook aimed at restoring Penn State pride by uniting students for a singular cause: "Show their support for the victims, really focus all this attention back on the victims and their families," he said.
Read: PSU Students, Fans Show Support of Child Abuse Victims ...
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Penn State sex scandal parallels Catholic crisis, except PSU leaders are being held accountable, says chair of NSACKristine Ward is chairperson of SNAP's sister survivors advocacy group, the National Survivors Advocacy Coalition.
In the mid '60s, Ward was a student at her alma mater, Penn State when Joe Paterno became football coach. She sees direct parallels between the Penn State disclosures of alleged sexual abuse of children and its coverup, and the Catholic church sex abuse scandal -- with the exception that the Penn State brass, who covered up the allegations from the beginning, have gotten fired while not a single catholic bishop has even been reprimanded, much less fired.
In the meantime, no one is paying attention to the real victims in these tragedies -- the children and the innocents.
Watch the Kristine Ward interview on Ohio News Network ...
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The patterns outlined in the 40-count indictment charging Sandusky are familiar:
- the grooming of vulnerable youth,
- using a trusted position and stature within the community to gain access to children and to fend off suspicion,
- descriptions of fondling and rape of children,
- reports of abuse being minimized,and
- a continued toleration of the abuser within a protective culture.
-- National Catholic Reporter
Read 'Abuse and cover-up: Penn State's Catholic-like scandal' in NCROnline ...
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Penn State trustees fire football coach and university president as sex scandal evokes Boston clergy crisisPenn State trustees fired football coach Joe Paterno and university president Graham Spanier amid the growing furor over how the school handled sex abuse allegations against an assistant coach.
Boston attorney Carmen Durso, who has represented numerous clergy sex abuse victims, said the Boston and Penn State cases will likely share a lack of proper accountability for the people who allowed accused abusers to work with children years later.
"If you're a powerful person in any regard, the rules are different for you," he said. "That's why Cardinal Law just had his (80th birthday) party in Rome and that's why Joe Paterno is still a hero to people even though he let this go on."
Read 'Paterno fired over Penn St. child abuse scandal' at CBS News ...
Read 'Penn State scandal evokes Boston clergy crisis' at CBS News ...
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"When anyone reports to us the sexual abuse of a child ... it’s not a case for the kind of investigation that we might want to launch ourselves.
“This is a case for calling in the authorities, because after all, this is not just about determining what is taking place in any event or accusation but what is the credible threat that even now if we delay, similar children might be put in similar danger.”
Read more in the Associated Baptist Press ...
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Ireland closes Vatican Embassy established in 1929 when Mussolini declared Vatican state sovereignty in EuropeThe Irish government announced late on Thursday that it has closed its embassy to the Vatican. This has revived focus on a bitter public debate on the Catholic Church’s handling of clerical child sex abuse cases and the wider question of church-state relations.
Ireland's diplomatic relations with the Vatican began in 1929, the year that the 14 square block suburb near downtown Rome was declared a nation due to a 'Concordat' between the Holy See and the government of Italy.
The Concordat of 1929 was signed by Pius XI's curial emissary, Pietro Gaspari, a Cardinal, and Italian premier Benito Mussolini. Following the signing of the Concordat, several Catholic countries sent ambassadors, including Ireland. That relationship ended on Thursday.
The Lateran Treaty, as the Concordat was officially called, is one of the Lateran Pacts of 1929 or Lateran Accords, three agreements made in 1929 between the Kingdom of Italy and the Holy See, ratified June 7, 1929, ending the "Roman Question". Italy was then under a Fascist government; the succeeding Italian governments have all upheld the treaty.
The pacts consisted of three documents:
- A political treaty recognising the full sovereignty of the Holy See in the State of Vatican City, which was thereby established.
- A concordat regulating the position of the Catholic Church and the Catholic religion in the Italian state.
- A financial convention agreed on as a definitive settlement of the claims of the Holy See following the losses of its territories and property.
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Megan Peterson was abused by her priest in Crookston, ND for two years at the age of 14. She's one of the few who have come forward while the abuse was ongoing. Traveling the world with SNAP for the last few months, she now wants to reach out to others by starting a group in Fargo, North Dakota.
In this story, from Fargo's WDAY website, hear Megan Peterson and SNAP Outreach Director Barbara Dorris as they encourage other survivors to come forward and to begin healing together.
Read and watch the story on the WDAY websiite ...
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“The world is a dangerous place. Not because of the people who are evil; but because of the people who don't do anything about it.”
-- Albert Einstein
“The greater the power, the more dangerous the abuse.”
-- Edmund Burke
“I assure all the faithful that there are no archdiocesan priests in ministry today who have an admitted or established allegation of sexual abuse of a minor against them.”
-- Cardinal Justin Regali, Philadelphia Archdiocese, shortly before a Grand Jury report resulted in his removing twenty-one priests from their ministries for sexual abuse allegations.
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First ever US Roman Catholic bishop and diocese to face criminal charges for failure to protect children from sexually abusive priestsBishop Robert Finn and the Kansas City-St. Joseph, Mo., diocese have been charged with failure to report suspected child abuse.
The charges, filed Friday in a Jackson County, Mo., court and announced at a press conference this afternoon, represent the first time a U.S. bishop has faced criminal charge related to clergy sexual abuse, and the first time a diocese as a whole has faced such charges.
Read the full story in NCR Online:
KC bishop charged with failure to report child abuse
======== Follow links provided in a Special Edition of NSAC News today ===========
-- KC bishop charged for not bringing porn to police - KANSAS CITY (MO) - St. Louis Post-Dispatch
-- Jackson County grand jury indicts Catholic Diocese, Bishop Finn - KANSAS CITY (MO) - KCTV -[with video]
-- KC Bishop charged for not bringing porn to police - KANSAS CITY (MO) - The Associated Press
-- 'Underlying systemic issues' need to be dealt with in abuse scandal, nun says - CANADA - National Post
Also, read: Finn should be Finn ished on the Voice from the Desert website ...
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