Sex Abuse Victims to Hold 54 Vigils on Anniversary of Catholic Sex Scandal
Posted on : Sat, 06 Jan 2007 14:13:00 GMT| Author :SNAP
News Category : PressRelease
CHICAGO,Jan. 6 /PRNewswire/ -- In over 50 cities this weekend - with candles,signs and childhood photos - supporters and victims of sexually abusiveclergy will stand outside churches and hold vigils to mark the fiveyear anniversary of the Catholic molestation and cover up crisis.OnJanuary 6, 2002, the Boston Globe ran the first of what wouldultimately become 850 stories about pedophile priests, sparking theexposure and suspension of some 900 proven, admitted and crediblyaccused child- molesting clerics across the US.
Member of aself-help group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused byPriests, are organizing the events, designed to emphasize that"innocent kids and vulnerable adults are still at risk and churchofficials are still reckless and secretive," according to BarbaraBlaine of Chicago, the group's president and founder."Bishopsare working harder than ever at public relations," Blaine said, "butfundamentally, they still protect their secrets more than they protecttheir flocks."At the vigils, victims will briefly highlight what they call two 'particularly egregious' cases:-- a Wisconsin priest, Fr. Ryan Erickson, who murdered two men in 2002,after one of them confronted him with allegations that he was molestingchildren, -- a Kansas priest, Fr. Robert Larsen, whose sex crimesagainst kids led five of his victims to commit suicide. SNAP memberswill ask that -- church employees and lay Catholics download photos offamilies hurt by Erickson and Larsen and display them in localchurches, and -- bishops to disclose the names of accused predatorpriests, stop using"hardball legal tactics" and display photos ofseveral victims in churches across the country.Detailsof this weekend's events, which start Saturday morning January 6th,will be prominently displayed on the home page of SNAP's website:SNAPnetwork.org)The26 states include: CA, CO, DC, FL, GA, IL, IN, IO, MA, MN, MI, MO, NE,NH, NV, NJ, NY, OH, OK, RI, TN, TX, VA, WI, WA and WY.The54 cities include: Ann Arbor, Atlanta, Boston, Carmel, Charlottesville(VA), Cheyenne, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Colorado Springs,Dayton, Denver, Des Moines, District of Columbia, Duluth, Green Bay,Houston, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Knoxville, Lafayette (IN), Lansing,Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Madison, Manchester NH, Madiereville (IN),Milwaukee, Miami, Monterey, Nashville Newark, New Orleans, New YorkCity, Newark, Orange County (CA), Peoria, Phoenix, Portland (OR),Providence, San Antonio, San Bernardino, San Diego, Santa Barbara, St.Paul, St. Louis, Seattle, Toledo, Tucson, Tulsa, and West Palm Beach,Wichita.Additionalsites are expected to be finalized throughout the weekend on Friday andSaturday. These will be added to the list on the SNAP website,SNAPnetwork.org as they become available.Exact times and locations will be prominently displayed on the home page of SNAP's website (SNAPnetwork.org)At some of the vigils, victims will: -- hand out fliers to parishionersentering or leaving mass, and -- be joined by members of Voice of theFaithful, an independent Catholic lay reform group.SNAPis the nation's oldest and largest support group for clergy abusevictims. Founded in 1989, it has more than 8,000 members and 65 supportgroups. Most were molested by Catholic priests, nuns, bishops, andseminarians. But a growing number were abused by religious figures inother denominations.SNAP
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.Pedophilia and sexual abuse of children in Australia