Springfield Republican via Mass Live
June 26, 2020
By Ron Chimelis
The press conference consisted of a single person, but Robert Hoatson said he spoke for thousands of victims who have come forward with allegations of sexual abuse — and any who still may.
The former priest and president of Road to Recovery, an advocacy group for victims of church-related sexual abuse, called for the resignation of Mitchell Rozanski, the outgoing bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield. Hoatson also called on Pope Francis to rescind the bishop’s reassignment as Archbishop of the Archdiocese in St. Louis, Missouri.
Hoatson said he expects neither result, but promised to keep speaking out on behalf of victims of clergy sexual abuse. Speaking in front of diocesan headquarters in Springfield Friday, he said retired Judge Peter Velis’ findings of “unequivocally credible” sexual abuse claims against former Bishop Christopher J. Weldon — and failures in the diocese’s handling of the allegations — stood as a scathing commentary on Rozanski’s tenure in Springfield.
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