I-Team: Clergy Sex Abuse Victim Speaks Out

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(WBRE/WYOU-TV) The aftermath of the Pennsylvania  Statewide Grand jury report on the Catholic Church sex scandal is having, what some of the victims are calling, a devastating impact on their families …
     The scathing 1,300 plus page report details graphic sexual abuse of around 1000 victims in six Catholic Dioceses in the Commonwealth..
     Some victims are coming forward saying the abuse they suffered is now causing pain for their families.  The I-Team’s Andy Mehalshick has the story,


 “She just wanted to put out a statement she was happy to have been released it on her behalf.” State Representative Tarah Toohil is talking about a Luzerne County woman who was raped by a priest when she was 17 years old.

The crime took place 20 years ago.  “She’s very strong and is going to come forward but right now she’s trying to deal with discussing something like this with their children. It was never discussed.”  Said Representative Toohil


Her statement reads in part:   “My parents believed in the integrity of the collar. They were devout Catholics who were thrilled that their child was engulfed in the Catholic church.”  

She also writes:   “Did they know? Were they blinded by the false sense of security in sending me with the man behind the collar? Yes. Without question. 

 This victim says she does not blame her parents because she says that was part of their belief system..as it was with many Catholic families.. 

 “Right now families are grappling with this with their families. The families did not even know the abuse had occurred.”

 Janet MacKay is director of the Luzerne County Victims Resource Center. She is urging victims not to try and go it alone – to reach out for help “It doesn’t matter if it happened 20- 30 40 years ago. We are here to provide you emotional support look at your options and walk that walk with you.” 

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