Report: Accused priests served in more than half of Chicago’s parishes

By Michelle Boorstein The country’s biggest advocacy groups for victims of Catholic clergy sexual abuse released a study today contending … Continued

By Michelle Boorstein

The country’s biggest advocacy groups for victims of Catholic clergy sexual abuse released a study today contending that more than half of Chicago’s Catholic parishes have been served by a priest accused of sexually abusing children.

The study, released today by a coalition including Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), Voice of the Faithful and BishopAccountability.org also says accused priests were not randomly spread across the city’s parishes but were assigned only in about half of Chicago’s zip codes.

The Chicago Tribune did a short piece on this today and quoted an archdiocesan spokeswoman as calling the report’s conclusions “questionable.” Colleen Dolan noted that the accused priests have since been removed.

We know from our own efforts to properly track the cases of accused priests that hard data is lacking. The church decides who is “credibly accused” and doesn’t release the full list of people in that category. For this new study, the groups appears to have used not only the priests considered credibly accused by the church, but other names that came from lawsuits and other public sources.

The whole subject of which names belong on these lists is complicated on both sides; innocent men who are accused have little recourse to clear their names, especially if the church calls the allegations credible. Victims have no legal right to information on how the church handled their perpetrators.

The church has made enormous changes and progress in the past decade in dealing with the subject of clergy sex abuse, but the lack of full public accountability won’t likely be going away any time soon.

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  • snapjudy

    quoted:WHAT?? Well, that figures that victims have NO legal rights!!! Could that be one reason why so many kids have been sexually abused by clergy?It would not even be at all surprising to find this report of these statistics and numbers of abusive priests is “low”. These are only those predator priests who have been made public.I can’t even imagine how many children have been sexually abused within the Archdiocese of Chicago or any Diocese for that matter. It is overwhelming to even comprehend.Many victims are still too afraid to speak up, and that is understandable. It is not an easy thing for a person to do, especially if they have been sexually abused by a ‘holy’ priest, bishop, brother, or nun.But, it is important that everyone who has been harmed by a clergy to speak up and tell someone they trust. They too need to be counted, start to heal, and protect kids.Barbara Blaine, founder of SNAP “Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests” is right to urge all victims to speak up because: “Silence protects predators.”Judy Jones, SNAP Midwest Associate Director, 636-433-2511, [email protected]

  • glorybe1929

    I have so much compassion for those who have been abused by people of authority, especially those who have been “spiritually murdered” by the priests, nuns and brothers in the Roman Catholic Church.We left this “faux church” in 2001 when it was revealed to us,LIKE A BOLT OF LIGHTENING FROM GOD, that all we had heard over the years (from the religious in our family), that we would not believe , WAS TRUE. IT WAS ON OUR 50TH WEDDING ANNIV. THERE ARE NO INNOCENT MEN or WOMEN IN THE RCC! They all knew of these Crimes Against Humanity happening in their midst and did ABSOLUTELY NOTHING TO STOP IT!.THEREFORE THEY ARE AS CULPABLE AS THE ONES DOING THE CRIMES.

  • Muldoon1

    Please join us on Oct 31in Rome as we stand at the gates of St Peter Square to say…….. ENOUGH.For more info go to survivorvoice.orgThank youIf you can’t make it to Rome go to the survivorvoice.org website for a live steaming video feed of the days event.Get the word out. Thanks Muldoon