(46 Total References)
Saint Gerard Majella Church
Bill Gately.It is a name that has circled around the news as a beacon of hope in the recovery of those who have been sexually abused by priests.The committee sat down with Bill and a list of questions.However, before the questions were asked, Bill began the interview with an introduction of the Survivor's Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) in which Bill is currently the head of the New England Chapter.It is a service to survivors that was started in 1989 by a woman who was abused by a priest.For information, their website is www.survivorsnetwork.org
Life took a downward turn for Bill
at the age of 14 years old, for it was at that time when a missionary priest abused him here in the town of Canton.The abuse lasted for a period of 3 years, leaving him with feelings of shame and guilt.He
described how "traumatic and shocked" he
felt from the moment the abuse began.However, he
felt powerless to refuse.At home
, neither Bill's mother nor father knew what was happening to their son.Why didn't he
tell them?Because the enormity of what was happening to him was something that was too bizarre to be believed.Generations ago, the word of the parish priest was the next thing to God.For a number of children that were victims of sexual abuse by a priest, all reason became distorted, too shocking and shameful to share.Bill
felt no sense of value to his
life and tried to rationalize suicide, but found himself "too tired or depressed to do it."His
grades in school dropped, his
social life was affected and relationships became no more than a chore.Because sacred boundaries had been shattered, he
found himself not knowing what to do at times, how to act, where to draw a line or say "no".All joy was gone.
In 1993, Bill
worked tirelessly in tracking down his
abuser and finally, confronting him.Calling himself an "old friend" of the priest's, Bill
was relentless in his
pursuit and undaunted by numerous roadblocks to track down his
abuser.The committee describes the encounter, "Bill
and the priest went to a local park where they talked for two hours.Bill
had threatened to put the priest in jail if he
lied, but did not plan to kill him.Playing the cat and mouse game with his
abuser," the committee reports, "Was something that he
enjoyed."The power had shifted.
According to the Committee, "Bill
does not have any bitterness or vengeance.He
believes that the Kingdom of God is in ourselves, that we can heal spiritually, emotionally and sometimes physically."
Bill wants for women to become ordained in the Catholic Church.He
also believes that Cardinal Law is a victim: a victim of his
own addiction to power and prestige.Bill
did not want for Cardinal Law to be sent away, but to withstand the media's attention and accept responsibility in his
part for allowing the victimization to continue.
After the interview with Bill Gately
, the committee was "Filled with surprise and sympathy for Bill
."They did not expect for Bill
to go into the depth of his
story in the way that he
did."We felt the pain from him," they agreed, "especially how he
remarked how he
could not be surprised or be filled with much joy."They came away with the sense of how other victims must have felt, though, in Bill Gately's
arranged for the opportunity to finally confront his
...Bill Gately, Survivor
CANTON - William Gately says he stopped being a victim of clergy sexual abuse and started being a survivor the day he confronted his abuser.Speaking last night at a Voice of the Faithful meeting in the basement of St. Gerard Majella Church in Canton, Gately told the 100 or so in attendance that the difference between a victim and a survivor is that a survivor has come to grips with the damage done to him or her and can begin healing.In that sense, the parishioners of the Archdiocese of Boston and the Catholic Church in general are still victims, said Gately, co-chairman of the New England chapter of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP).
‘‘I see all of you as victims," said Gately
, one of four speakers at last night's meeting. ‘‘It is only when you realize the depth of the damage that has been done to you that you will begin to heal.
...Gately, a Catholic Youth Organization leader at St. Gerard's in his youth, said he was abused for three years by a priest not associated with the parish.
‘‘The sexual assault ended 37 years ago, when I was 17," he
said. ‘‘The spiritual and emotional assault occurs every day."Gately
searched for two years for his
abuser, who had changed his
name, before confronting him in Phoenix in 1993. He
wondered aloud several times last night whether he
was the right speaker for a meeting of Voice of the Faithful
.The group's stated goals are to aid people who have been abused by clergy, support priests of integrity, and advocate for structural change within the church.
‘‘I cannot share your dreams (about change within the archdiocese)," Gately
added: ‘‘There's nothing unfaithful about standing up for the love of your faith."
Archdiocese outlines plans for outreach program
"They seem thus far to have been coerced to do whatever it is that they've done," said Bill Gately, a victim advocate for the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, a national group.
"I think they need to do a lot more."
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Clouds linger over church
"His efforts at denying responsibility for settlements by suggesting First Amendment separation between church and state is offensive, especially given his call for healing," said Bill Gately, the New England spokesman for Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests."It seems inconsistent to me, and it's caused me to wonder if it's more empty rhetoric rather than sincere pastoral concern."
Bill Gately, a New England director of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, said that the settlement "prevents truth and justice" by ending the state's plans to file criminal charges, according to the NY Times.
A spokesperson for the Manchester diocese
told the NY Times
that Bishop McCormack has no plans to resign.An alleged victim who was present at McCormack's deposition said the bishop claimed that he
believed that sexual abuse committed by a priest was a sin, but he
did not know it was a crime, according to the LA Times
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