CHICAGO — A group concerned about how the Catholic church has handled clergy sexual misconduct called Saturday for the next archbishop of Chicago to aggressively seek out victims and urge them to come forward.
The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests held a news conference in Chicago after Bishop Blase (BLAYZ') Cupich (SOO'-pihch), of Spokane, Washington, was introduced as the successor to the retiring Cardinal Francis George.
Leaders of SNAP said Cupich should show his commitment to protecting children by saying Mass at a parish where now-defrocked priest and convicted child molester Daniel McCormack had worked.
"We beg Cupich to prod his flock to aggressively seek out others McCormack may have assaulted and who may still be suffering in silence, shame and self-blame," said Kate Bochte of SNAP in a statement.
Cupich served as chairman of the U.S. bishops' child protection committee as church leaders were putting in place a toughened policy on disciplining guilty priests.
In a news conference Saturday, Cupich said he was "committed" to healing the wounds from the crisis and pledged to "work hard on this and make it an important part of my ministry."