Father James Scahill

The Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

Synopsis: Perhaps the most brave priest in America, or more than a year, Father Jim has, for more than a year, withheld the 6% diocesan tax that goes to the chancery office, in protest of how Bishop Thomas Dupree handles abuse cases. He is the only priest that we know of who has taken such a strong stand. Father Jim also recently testified under oath that his bishop bragged that the bishop’s predecessor destroyed diocesan abuse records.

Phone: 413 525 2075 or 0860 (home)

News Story: several, see below


Abuse Victim Tells Story of Great Priest- Tom Shea, Springfield Republican

-Ruined Files Spark Allegation- Boston Globe

-Scahill deposition- Springfield Republican

-Priest Castigates Springfield Diocese, Boston Globe

- Massachusetts Daily Collegian, Hero Priest

For more details: Warren Mason 413 525 1069 or 9280 (

Peter Pollard 413 247 3271 (

MISSOURI - Name: Father Robert Smoot

Title: Director

Assignment: Office of Youth Ministry

Diocese: St. Louis

Synopsis: In August, Smoot testified in court against a friend and fellow priest who had molested a boy. Smoot's courage helped lead to the conviction of Father Bryan Kuchar. Smoot then spoke with the victim's mother, and wrote a sensitive story about the trial in the Archdiocesan Youth Ministry Office's magazine.

Phone: 314 533 1887, 314 792 7600

News story: St. Louis Post Dispatch, September 3, 2003 (see also

Post-Dispatch columns by Bill McClellan)


For more details: Sue Lindenbusch 314 346 0813,

Barbara Dorris 314 862 7688,

St. Louis County Prosecutors Rob Livergood and Allyn Hoke.

NEW HAMPSHIRE - Name: Father James "Seamus" MacCormack

Title: Former pastor

Assignment: St. Patrick Church, Jaffrey (has now left the priesthood, and works as a public school counselor).

Diocese: Manchester NH

Synopsis: Father Seamus refused to go along with the efforts of diocesan staff that tried to "sanitize" news of the death of Father Richard Connors. Connors died of a heart attack after taking Viagra, wearing only a leather accessory on his genitals, and surrounded by pornographic videos and magazines. Church officials destroyed the porn before police could investigate. Bishop John McCormack removed Father Seamus and sent him for psychiatric treatment because he would not help to keep Connors' secrets. In July of 2002, he filed lawsuit against his bishop. It was settled in May of 2003. (Father Roland P. Cote., who admitted a sexual

relationship with a boy who was between 16 and 18 years old, replaced Father Seamus.)


News story: 7/24/02 Union Leader

For more details: Carolyn Disco 603 424 3120, 603 582 9084 or

Mike Neyens 603-532-8061 (

OHIO - Name: Monsignor Lawrence Breslin

Title: Pastor

Assignment: St. Charles Borromeo in Kettering (near Dayton)

Diocese: Cincinnati

Synopsis: Years ago, Msgr. Breslin repeatedly warned Vatican officials about Msgr. Daniel Pater, an admitted abuser who left the states after molesting a girl and was rapidly climbing the Vatican bureaucracy. Earlier this year, Breslin spoke out about Pater again, in a shocking story in the Dallas Morning News, and on an in-depth three-part local television news series on the sexual abuse crisis. He also hosts a local Voice of the Faithful chapter at his parish.

Phone: 937 434 6081, 937-432-1360

News story: Dallas Morning News, 8/31/03


Dallas Morning News Story

WCPO-TV Report

For more details:

Mike Knellinger, in Dayton 937 426 8905, 419 999 2701

Kris Ward 937-293-1742 (

NEW JERSEY - Name: Monsignor Ken Lasch

Title: Pastor

Assignment: St. Joseph's Parish, Mendham NJ

Diocese: Paterson

Phone: 973 543 7474

Synopsis: When Monsignor Lasch learned that his predecessor was a perpetrator, he began to actively reach out to victims. He often discusses clergy abuse from pulpit, and helped organize an independent support group for such victims. He allowed a SNAP leader to speak at Sunday masses, and let self-help groups meet on church property. Lasch, a canon lawyer, former chancery official and head of priest personnel, has at times felt ostracized by some of his brother priests for his outspoken advocacy for abuse survivors.

Daily Record News Story

Second News Story

For more information:

Mark Serrano 703 771 9606, 703 727 4940

Buddy Cotton 917 715 6500 (

MISSOURI - Name: Father Joseph Starmann

Title: retired pastor

Assignment: part-time hospital chaplain, lives in Winfield, MO

Diocese: Jefferson City, MO

Synopsis: Fr. Joe is one of only two known priests in America who have lobbied with abuse victims for extended statutues of limitations, which make it easier to expose, remove and convict child molesters. On just a couple of hours' notice, he testified before a crucial legislative panel at the state capitol this spring. And for years, he has offered considerable personal support to one of the victims of former bishop and seminary director Tony O'Connell.

Phone: 636 566 8420

For more details:

David Clohessy 314 566 9790, 314 645 5915

For more information, please contact these SNAP leaders:

Mark Serrano of Leesburg VA (SNAP Board Member)703 727 4940

Peter Isely of Milwaukee (SNAP Board Member) 414 429 7259

Barbara Blaine of Chicago (SNAP Founder & President) 312 399 4747

David Clohessy of St. Louis (SNAP National Director) 314 566 9790

Terrie Light of San Francisco (SNAP Board Member) 510 517 3338


Any original material on these pages is copyright © 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.