August 30. 2018
Global groups call on Pope to release church files on former cardinal McCarrick and others.
Groups condemn false conflation of sexual orientation and sexual violence in former Vatican ambassador’s letter as “wrong and dangerous”.
Clergy sex abuse survivors and human rights attorneys today are calling upon Pope Francis to order the release of all church files related to all allegations of sexual violence, including by former cardinal Theodore McCarrick. They are also demanding the Vatican condemn any suggestion by any church official that links the sexual abuse of children and vulnerable adults with the sexual orientation of either the victim or the offender.
“There is absolutely no link between sexual violence against children, minors and vulnerable adults and sexual orientation,” said Peter Isely, clergy sex abuse survivor and founding member of the global group Ending Clergy Abuse (ECA). “Making this false link is immoral, dangerous, and wrong,” continued Isely, a licensed clinical psychotherapist,who operated the only inpatient treatment center for survivors of sexual violence by clergy.
The call for release of church files was made by survivors and attorneys who lead three global groups concerned with the Catholic church abuse crisis: ECA, the Survivors Network of the those Abused by Priests (SNAP), and the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR). The news conference was outside the Vatican embassy, where documents that allegedly implicate the Pope in the cover-up of McCarrick’s offenses are thought to be filed, according to former Vatican ambassador Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò.
“The infighting between factions of the hierarchy does nothing to protect children around the world,” said Becky Ianni, board member of SNAP. “Any attempt by Viganò and others to use the abuse crisis and victims of clergy sexual abuse as leverage in the struggle for church power must stop.”
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