Leaflets Raise Alarm about Ex-Priest

By Robert Hite
The Examiner [Missuri]
December 21, 2006

When David Clohessy feels passionate enough about a certain issue he drives across the state of Missouri to tell people about it.

He and three other members of Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests passed out fliers Thursday in the Independence neighborhood of John Tulipana.

Tulipana is a former priest accused of molesting a 12-year-old boy in the 1970s, according to He resigned from the priesthood in 1994.

"We've been worried about Tulipana for a while," said Clohessy, who drove from St. Louis.

He said SNAP found out that Tulipana lives on Shrank Road after reading a news article about a lawsuit filed last week against Tulipana. The incident allegedly occurred in 1978.

Clohessy, SNAP national director, said SNAP's goal is to let parents know their may be a pedophile living nearby. They passed out leaflets to 40 homes in the area.

He said Tulipana has never been convicted of any crimes. Tulipana did not return telephone calls.

Rebecca Summers, director of communications for the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, did not respond to the distribution of the leaflets. However, a Dec. 14 release indicates the diocese could not respond to the lawsuit because it had not yet reviewed it.

She did say all diocese employees who volunteer or/and work with children are trained regarding these issue.

"We do training for everyone" who comes in contact with children in the church, she said.

Also, review boards, including people associated and not associated with the Catholic Church, are established, Summers said.

SNAP also wants to help abused victims, Clohessy said.

"Our goal is to help people who have been hurt in this way," he said.

Some of the victims, he said, are unemployed, underemployed, unemployable or suffer other problems.

"Many end up committing suicide," he said. "It's crucial that people come forward and address this."

The victims need to understand they are not at fault, they can get better, and there is support for them, Clohessy said. SNAP can be confidentially contacted at 1-888-Snapheals for help for anyone victimized by clergy of any denomination.

He said estimates exist that there are 100,000 victims of Catholic priests in this country.

Tulipana worked a number of parishes:

n Nativity of Mary, 10017 E. 36th Terrace in Independence.

n St. Catherine's at 4101 E. 105th Terrace, Kansas City.

n Holy Rosary, Clinton, Mo.

n St. Augustine's, 7801 the Paseo.

n Christ the King, 85th Street and Wornall Road.

n Holy Trinity, 934 Norton Ave.

n Coronation of Our Lady, 13000 Bennington Ave., Grandview.

Reach Robert Hite at or 816-350-6321.


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