Settlements Reached in Chicago Clergy Abuse Cases

Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests
August 12, 2008

Statement by Barbara Blaine of Chicago, national president of a support group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (312-399-4747)

No single check magically erase years of cover up and insensitivity and recklessness and deceit public relations posturing by church officials. Nor does a check magically restore the shattered trust, stolen childhoods and devastated psyches of dozens of victims of predatory priests and comlicit bishops.

It is not praiseworthy when a church official, years later, under tremendous stress, finally gives money to men and women who were raped and sodomized as kids by trusted priests, who suffered in silence and shame for decades because church officials covered up the crimes, and (in many cases) whose pain could have been prevented if only church officials showed a modicum of compassion.

We are grateful for the courage and persistence of these caring victims. We appreciate their bravery in exposing their predators and corrupt church officials by seeking justice through our legal system. All victims and Catholics should be especially grateful that these victims insisted that secret church documents about these pedophile priests will be made public. These courageous victims are the ones who deserve praise today.

We hope that these settlements will provide one more validation for these brave victims, and will help them move forward in their healing.

Civil settlements, however, don't put a single dangerous predator behind bars. They don't hold accountable even one church officials who selfishly and deceitfully put innocent kids in harm's way again and again. And they don't address the root causes of the abuse and the cover up: the virtually unchecked power of the church's rigid, secretive, self-serving, all-male hierarchy.

Contacts: David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, 314 645 5915 home)


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