|Clergy Sex Victims Blast Catholic Officials
August 23 2010
Group wants to know whereabouts of accused priest
SNAP: Church is secretive about recently suspended cleric
Darien-based religious order ignores victim for four months
Self help group criticizes them for “delays, secrecy & recklessness”
Holding signs and childhood photos at a sidewalk news conference, clergy sex abuse victims will prod Chicago area Catholic officials to explain and publicly apologize
--for ignoring a victim of a recently suspended predator priest for four months, and
--for their continuing secrecy about the accused child molesting cleric.
They will also urge his supervisors to
-- disclose his status and whereabouts of the predator, and
-- aggressively seek out others who saw, suspected or suffered his crimes and offer them help.
Monday, Aug. 23, 1:00 p.m.
Outside the Carmelite regional office, 1317 Frontage Road in Darien IL (630-971-0050)
Two-three clergy sex abuse victims who belong to a Chicago-based support group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAPnetwork.org)
In May, two Joliet Catholic priests were suspended from their churches because of allegations that they molested a boy in the 1970s. One of them, Fr. Kevin Michael McBrien (773-947-4580), belongs to a Darien-based religious order called the Carmelites. (The other is Fr. Lee Ryan, a diocesan priest).
But after four months after the victim contacted local Catholic officials, not a single Carmelite has called or written or contacted him. Nor have the Carmelites disclosed where Mc Brien is, whether they’ll help his victim or whether they are investigating the child sex abuse allegations against McBrien.
As best SNAP can tell, despite the four month delay and the full cooperation of the victim, neither the Joliet diocese nor the Carmelites have made any public announcement about the results of their supposed investigation into either cleric.
SNAP believes the Carmelites should at least acknowledge the victim’s report, offer him counseling, and tell him (and the public) McBrien’s whereabouts and the status of their supposed investigation.
At the time he was ousted in May, McBrien was working at St. Matthew’s Church in Glendale Heights, IL (1555 Glen Ellyn Road, 630 469 6300, http://www.stmatthewchurch.org/). His whereabouts now are unknown. SNAP thinks his superiors should force him into a treatment center so he can get therapy and so that kids can be protected. The group also wants the Carmelites to disclose where he is and a full list of where he’s worked in the past.
For the past eight years, official US Catholic church abuse policy requires “openness” with child sex abuse allegations and “compassion” toward victims. SNAP believes that the Carmelites are breaking that policy.
McBrien met the boy at Joliet High School. According to the Catholic Directory, in the 1980s, McBrien also worked in the Los Angeles archdiocese (St. Frances de Chantal church in North Hollywood). In the 1970s, he worked in the Newark archdiocese (Immaculate Conception church in Norwood and St. Cecilia’s church in Englewood). In both places he was in parishes with parochial schools. SNAP believes ( but is not certain) that he also spent time in Houston Texas and in two other California towns (around 2002 in Encino and later in Fairfield). McBrien, a Salem MA native, was ordained in 1970.
The victim is now in his 40s, lives in Florida, and is represented by Miami attorney Adam Horowitz (305 931 2200). He has not filed a civil lawsuit at this point.
David Clohessy 566 9790 ( SNAPclohessy@aol.com ), Therese Albrecht708 263 3050, Barbara Blaine 312 399 4747
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