Group criticizes Springfield diocese handling of abuse

WJBC Radio

December 21, 2018

By Dave Dahl

John Freml of Springfield is still part of the Catholic church, even though he’s a supporter of SNAP – Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests.

“I still identify as a Catholic; it’s a very contentious relationship, obviously,” Freml said during a news conference and protest outside Springfield’s downtown Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. “The church is not just the hierarchy; it’s the people of God, it’s the people in the pews, it’s the laity. The church can be and is so much better than this. I stay to help reform the church.”

He does say church leadership, including Springfield Bishop Thomas John Paprocki has lost all moral credibility in the priest sex abuse scandal, which exploded again this week with Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s contention that the Illinois Catholic leadership underreported the number of priests facing credible accusations by 500.

David Clohessy, one of the early organizers of SNAP, said Madigan should be out front on this, holding news conferences all over the state. And he wants the state to drop the statute of limitations in cases of priest sex abuse.

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