Thursday, January 27, 2011

Court backs church
Court backs church; Sex abuse victims respond

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 862 7688 home, 314 503 0003 cell,

How sad that church officials try to exploit legal technicalities in a clergy sexual assault case. It’s even sadder that Catholic officials are apparently succeeding in this callous effort.

Those who report being sexually violated by clerics deserve their day in court. They shouldn’t be silenced because of archaic, arbitrary and predator-friendly statutes of limitations. And if such statutes exist, church officials should not try to take advantage of them. Instead, if church officials believe they are innocent, they should let the truth surface in court, instead of seizing on any legal maneuver they can to prevent witnesses and evidence from surfacing.

Bishops can’t have it both ways. They can’t claim to be Christ’s representatives on earth while acting like cold-hearted CEOs, especially in clergy sexual misconduct cases.

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