Victims applaud minister's sentence but urge more action

By David Clohessy
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests
August 24, 2015

We’re grateful that Rev. Gregory Ivan Hawkins has gotten a tough sentence. Now, however, others at Zion Plaza Church and Zion Child Care& Learning Center must launch an aggressive outreach campaign to find and help others who are in pain because of Rev. Hawkins’ crimes.

Too often, when law enforcement pursues a child molesting cleric, his supervisors, colleagues and church members stay silent. That’s wrong. They have a moral and civic duty to aggressively seek out others who may have seen, suspected or suffered the minister’s crimes. They must urge these victims, witnesses and whistleblowers to step forward, get help, expose wrongdoing, protect others and start healing.

Only a fool would believe that this brave 15 year old girl is Rev. Hawkins’ first and only victim. And only timid, self-serving church members and staff would sit passively by and let others who were hurt by Rev. Hawkins suffer in shame, isolation, confusion and despair.



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