One year ago today, the Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report exposing decades of child sex abuse in six Pennsylvania dioceses was released. The Archdiocese of Philadelphia had previously been subject to grand jury investigations in 2005 and 2011. The Altoona-Johnstown Diocese grand jury report was released in 2016.
In Pennsylvania, we have been fortunate for the thorough investigations by law enforcement in each diocese, but justice is still elusive for many survivors. There have been very few criminal prosecutions or even civil lawsuits due to the statute of limitations. The neighboring states of Delaware, New York, and New Jersey have passed legislation that would allow once time-barred civil suits to be filed against the institutions that covered up abuse and exposed children to predators. In Pennsylvania, the fight for justice is a battle not just with the Church, but also the politicians in Harrisburg.
Our survivors need your support. Their advocacy takes a toll in many ways: physically, psychologically, financially and spiritually. On this anniversary of the groundbreaking GJ report, please take a moment to share your message of support to our survivors in the comment section below or on the C4C Facebook page.
8 thoughts on “Share Support For Survivors Still Waiting On GJ Report Justice”
I want justice for the victims of the Church abuses and I pray constantly, and try to protest in public when I can. In addition, I continue to post on social media that this matter will not go away until the victims have their days in court – or any kind of settlement that might help them in some way. Their childhoods can never be replaced, nor history changed, but so very many of us do care, and we do want whatever they want or need…..my heart has broken again and again for all of you! Please know that, and please keep your voices and spirits going, to the best of your own abilities. God bless you all!
How can we advocate for survivors in the November 2019 elections? My representatives have been on board with survivors. Can we post the names of senators who may be up for reelection and failed to pass through Senator Rossi bill from last year,
There is not a day that goes by that I don’t think about the abuse on our most precious gift of children.
To all survivors, I believe you, I’m deeply sorry for your pain, and I’m awed and inspired by your navigating your difficult journeys with courage and strength. No one has advanced the pursuit of justice more than you. You, your truths, and your advocacy are the primary, life-giving, forces behind it. No frustration, delay, set-back or obstructing force is larger, more powerful or sustaining than you. You ignited those in solidarity with you. You have realized changes that were once thought to be impossible. You are why justice will prevail. Thank you for being phenomenal human beings, changing the course of history, and humanizing humanity. My hope is that your journeys will result in healing and peace.
Hello My Dear Friend, Kate. I love reading what you have to say because it is always from the heart. I have decided to send in all my information and history to this fund the Archdiocese is offering us as their victims. I started this fight way back in early 1993. I am presently waiting to hear from the people involved in the fund what value they put on my life. In spite of all that was done to me, I am stronger and more spiritual than any of these Bishops put together. What is most difficult for many of the survivors is when you have been raped by a priest that represents Christ himself where do you go for hope? The priest has stripped you of the only life preserve you had left. I shared this very thought years ago when I went with Beth to her parish and spoke to the small gathering who wanted to hear from a survivor. The pastor was struck when I said these very words. I have been given a precious gift with excellent therapy to be able to separate the priest from the Divine. I am doing well and I like who I am today. It is people like you, Kate that kept my heart together and not in shattered pieces. You have been such an advocate for survivors for a long time, I treasure your words and your heart. Please know you will always be apart of why I am who I am and what I am! It always takes a village. This beautiful website with all of it’s supporters was and is that village. Those of you who are not familiar with me can go back and read my past posts. My fellow survivors, please know you are not alone. People do care about you. Look past the church and all it;s evil go inside and find your own personal spiritual soul, it is there waiting for you to reach in.
It is embarassing . It can feel very , very lonely and shameful when you speak so precisely about being inspirations etc.. There are so many cases and worse cases I think but there arent that many to feel ok with it ..I wouldnt imagine that the majority of my class im school were victims.. So that is the hardest part that is the one that makes it so sickening and why it can nevee get better or ever heal…Why things are the way they are …why no relationship will ever last . comfidence was never a problem till the shame or guilt.. Since the secret in the back of my mind showed it self thru doubt or fear or paranoia distrust ..Quite frankly you scare me and make me feel bad saying all this positive things.. The bottom line is the church is never gonna admit or change the attitude and every victim will be robbed of something that will never be repaired . The church should literally go broke paying each victim .. Its all that is being offfered to us while sealing off litigation and any future liability or disclosure of the truth by the church. All this time … And noone thinks about how far the churxh would go to silence victims. What if you dont take an offer in a compensation .. What if we have a list of persons that we can contact that might be victims or we know why our best friend comitted suicide and could cost the church millions by letting his family know. Who says its not scary having to deal with the church who has covered up , is attempting to get off cheaply and quietly and who are the culprits . And then if wed rather a lawyer who is in it for their 3rd of what it would cost to defend these deviants . And then its thru arbitrators who are getting paid and independent and claiming no cap on the amount offered ton victims yet offering less than any other progran they have been part of. We arent the least damaged ..quite the contrary and these are life sentence crimes … Well there is alot of money and if its all we are being offered they are gonna need to break a record with me ..Alone .. So dont praise me …pay me ..I dont feel like being questioned or proving or caring cause what i read just pisses me off. And I cant be pissed and forget. I just want to accept a offer that I know is noticed and felt in the Vatican and live life ..I cant think of why I would be offered a suitable amount by the people who have offered so little to everyone else. They are use to many more victims with far less funded programs.. But they are claiming to be independent. Im counting on being truthful and getting what I need.. And if I hear one more priest bishop or clergy member complain or argue against confession bill im gonna lose my sh%\. Do I need to explain..who the f #%÷ is gonna confess about a secret unless the one hearing it is also a pedophile ? Its specific about child abuse so wby dont they see it as just that considering all that is going on..am i the only weirdo that thinks its screaming ” see this is how it was possible there was sooo much abuse ! See how bold and defensive and passionate and confident and indifferent the bishop is about confession bill.. I need to get thru and get out.. Life is hard as it is .. I wont let it engulf life more and more. 2019 should be the last time I am concerned about any of it but this may still kill me.. So hold on with the ” we inspire you ” just pay attention
As a survivor I continue to be humbled and grateful for the support offers on this site. Please keep this site active – for your children, for my children, for all children.
At the last bishops conference in Baltimore the thought that kept running through my head was “these men are not holy”. As always it took me a few days to process everything I had seen and heard on the periphery of the conference. I left feeling that I needed Jesus more than anything and I wanted to find and experience true holiness. Around that time I read about a pilgrimage hosted by Fr. Howell and Dr. Taylor Marshall to Israel and decided to go and take my daughter. I am so thankful we went.I experienced so many beautiful things on that trip and I found the peace and holiness that was non- existent in Baltimore. After kissing the ground at Calvary I turned the corner and I had such an amazing experience it literally took my breath away. I truly felt as if I had been kissed and hugged by Jesus. I left in awe. Fast forward I came home to the US and after a few weeks I felt the attacks of the devil full force and at one point it was as if I got slapped in the face by things going on in my life and I was very discouraged. As if that wasn’t enough Archbishop Chaput was coming to the church I had been attending. I was so disheartened I decided to stay home from church that day .I was remembering the times i emailed Archbishop Chaput and his nasty responses in reply. I was also thinking of other interactions with survivors and their families that didn’t go well with him.Not to mention the lobbying going on to block the statutes of limitation changes. So when God kept telling me to go to mass and take Archbishop Chaput the small cross I carried on the Dolorosa I said no. I wanted to keep that cross because it had special meaning for me and the last thing I wanted to do is give it to Archbishop Chaput. I wanted to tell him about the bishops conference and tell him what I witnessed..the bishops of Philly getting drunk before my eyes and mocking their very own victims advocate among others. I wanted to tell him I no longer have any shred of respect left for them and no wonder Saint Charles Seminary is being shutdown and moved with these guys in charge and that Senior’s friendship with Bransfield was an outrage. But all morning I heard Jesus whisper “go take him the cross it’s a kiss from me”. He asked me to trust him and follow his Will. So I went to mass and the whole time I felt like attending the mass was a sort of penance and I was internally wrestling with myself. Then during the homily Archbishop Chaput said Confirmation was said to be like a kiss from Jesus and again my breath was taken away because that is what I experienced at Calvary. His use of those words validated to me what I was doing was exactly what God wanted of me. After mass i told Archbishop Chaput that I had recently been to israel and I was giving him my cross from the Dolorosa and it was a kiss from Jesus. He looked frail and was sitting with a cane at his side and didn’t look like the man I had met many years ago when he first came to the AD of Philly. He took the cross and held my hand but I didn’t kiss his ring. I just remember the stark contrast between that rustic almost primitive wooden cross and the jewels he wore namely his ring and crucifix and it seemed they weighted him down and in their complexity they paled in comparison to this simple olive cross.The priest standing behind him hurried me along as I mentioned Fr. Howell had blessed it and it was a 3rd class relic. I turned to leave and he reached and held my hand again and thanked me.He seemed genuinely touched, appreciative and surprised by the gesture.I left with my head spinning not quite knowing what exactly happened and why but one thing I know God used me to do his Will. The devil I realized had tried to discourage me from doing what Jesus asked but with the help of grace I had persevered. Dolorosa means “Sorrowful Way” or “Way of Suffering”. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that that is where I encountered Jesus. I also understand that is the only place Archbishop Chaput will ever fully understand the suffering of our survivors.
The bible readings yesterday made an impact on me. The Second reading was as follows “Brothers and sisters, Since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us rid ourselves of every burden and sin that clings to us and persevere in running the race that lies before us while keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus, the leader and perfecter of faith.For the sake of the joy that lay before him he endured the cross, despising its shame,and has taken his seat at the right of the throne of God.Consider how he endured such opposition from sinners,in order that you may not grow weary and lose heart. HEB 12 1-4 I encourage you to not give up because Jesus who is the Truth is close. Peace.
To all the survivors: I am sorry for all the hardship you have had to endure and have had to learn to move beyond the damage of the past. In your learning you may have felt you were bearing down to eat your pain and your suffering. You may have felt this healing you desperately needed could not penetrate deep enough to do any good. Maybe you felt burned out, tragedy and then possibly becoming a stranger to yourself or just this deep shame and damaged part of yourself. At times you may have felt intense rage and cussing could not even begin to cut into the pain and suffering. Then you may have felt you wanted nothing to do with any of this. It all just makes my heart cry and I am so sorry for all of you.
Maybe there is no simple on-off switch to the damage of the past, but something in you appears to reached for this place that has never been damaged and is not in pain. Your healing appears to be this place of “opening up” and “letting go” rather than closing down and holding on. This offers all of us hope and is journey to healing for all us, too. Naturally, this journey to healing is not the whole picture and yet I need to say you are all truly a precious miracle.