Joan Isaacs: Catholic abuse victim’s book ‘To Prey and To Silence’ warns about dangers of grooming


Debra Killalea

WHEN Joan Isaacs told her parish priest she was being sexually abused, he advised the then teenager to “find a man her own age”.

Aged just 15 and full of shame and fear, the young Joan bravely revealed the months of grooming and sexual abuse she experienced at the hands of local priest Francis Edward Derriman.

But despite reporting it, nothing happened, then there was silence — and lots of it.

What began as a fight for justice turned into a 40-year battle for the truth after endless stonewalling from the Catholic Church.

It would take a Royal Commission, years of therapy as well as the love and support from her family before she could even begin to heal.

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