Abuse survivors group insulted by Archdiocesan bankruptcy plan
“This is not the way a new church is going to be born,” said Peter Isely, a member of the Survivors and Clergy Leadership Alliance. “This is the old church.”
Archbishop Jerome Listecki announced on a radio talk show Wednesday morning that the archdiocese, as part of bankruptcy reorganization plan, would set aside $4 million to compensate sex abuse victims.
“It’s not just what is in the plan, but how it was communicated,” Isely said. “He doesn’t have the common decency, much less the Christian charity, to look survivors and victims’ family members in the face and explain to them why this amount is so low. We find out about it because it’s been on a radio talk show.”
Isely is one of the founders of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP. He said the reorganization plan hurts all Catholics, not just victims and their families.
“It’s not helping victim survivors. That’s obvious. But it is not helping Catholics either. We don’t believe any Catholic is going to be very satisfied with this. This is just going to continue the shame.”
Father James Connell said: “It is a sad day. It is an embarrassing day.” Connell is a retired Catholic priest who has been outspoken in his criticism of how the church has handled the sex abuse crisis.
“Justice is a matter of equity between the parties and the common good of society,” Connell said. “I certainly hope the bankruptcy court explains how this stands as justice.”
Monica Barrett, who was raped by a priest when she was a eight, appeared to be on the verge of tears as she spoke.
“This is a very sad day for survivors,” she said. “It’s just insulting. It is much like being raped all over again.”
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