Published on March 13, 2013
The National Survivor Advocates Coalition (NSAC) urgently calls on Pope Francis to act forcefully for justice for the survivors of sexual abuse by priests and nuns.
The Church walks in a moment of great hope.
The Church must walk through great pain to get to its fullness.
Words alone, whether they are pretty or plain, will not get the job done.
First, without hesitation, the new pope must remove criminally convicted Bishop Robert Finn of the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph.
In the midst of celebration it must be remembered that to truly cleanse and heal the process will be painful and it needs to be extensive.
Removals and resignations of hierarchs complicit in covering up crimes must be done. That means Pope Francis must take action against Cardinals, Archbishops and Bishops who have covered up crimes and aided criminal activity.
Clearing the backlog of hundreds upon hundreds of cases of priests credibly accused that are bottlenecked in the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith must be a priority. These men are on paid vacations and the vacations are paid for by the Catholic faithful.
The new pope is a Jesuit and the Jesuits order has been revealed to be one of the leading religious orders in terms of abuse cases. The new pope must see the damage to the Church and to the society at large from the crimes of the members of his order and those in his order who covered them up.
Words of judgment, condemnation and animosity toward victims and their families must end.
Nothing should be done to in any way that further harms the survivors.
A concentrated, real effort led by this new pope but done by the whole Church must be inaugurated to find and honor all the survivors of sexual abuse by priests and nuns.
— Kristine Ward, Chair, National Survivor Advocates Coalition, NSAC KristineWard@hotmail.com
The National Survivor Advocates Coalition (NSAC) is an all volunteer organization of in the pew Catholics and men and women of goodwill supporting survivors of sexual abuse and working to educate society about sexual abuse and to bring about effective legislative reforms. NSAC News is a daily free online news briefing on the scandal distributed online Monday through Friday. To subscribe email Steve Sheehan: firstname.lastname@example.org.