SNAP Statement on Brother Suttle

February 9, 2009

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

It's hard to know exactly how church officials will minimize and excuse their obvious deception and recklessness. We suspect they will say things like

- the parish secretary 'misspoke' yesterday on the phone when she offered to take a message for Brother Suttle.

- the website is out of date, he's no longer here

- he wasn't here long

- he was just living, not working here

- he's a religious order cleric, not formally associated with the archdiocese

None of this changes these disturbing facts:

A recently suspended, credibly accused, child-molesting Catholic cleric was quietly moved from one state to another among unsuspecting families who could have been warned by the archbishop but were not.

This exact pattern has happened hundreds of times in the US over the decades.

This is precisely what America's Catholic bishops promises to stop doing back in 2002.

They clearly haven't stopped endangering kids, deceiving parishioners, and transferring credibly accused child molesters.

It is possible that Brother Suttle has molested kids here in Texas. We haven't heard any allegations, but it's possible. And if he has molested San Antonio kids, the blame falls squarely on San Antonio's archbishop.

We desperately hope that anyone who saw, suspected or suffered Suttle's crimes - in Arizona, Texas, overseas or anywhere - comes forward, calls police, gets help and protects kids.

We also urge San Antonio’s Catholic bishop to

-- immediately oust Suttle from his San Antonio parish,

-- explain why he let Suttle live/work here, despite being suspended in Arizona for child sex abuse, and

-- publicly apologize to San Antonio Catholics for the diocese’s recklessness and secrecy.

(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the nation’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 17 years and have more than 8,000 members across the country. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. Our website is

Contact David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, 314-645-5915 home), Peter Isely (414-429-7259) Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747), Barbara Dorris (314-862-7688), Mary Grant (626-419-2930), Mark Serrano (703-727-4940)


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