Survivors Network for those abused by priests starts Rockford chapter

Group plans meetings for second Friday of every month; January meeting set for Jan. 13

The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) has established an Illinois Chapter in Rockford.

SNAP was launched in 1992 as a volunteer self-help organization for men and women who have been sexually abused as children and minors by the spiritual leaders of the Roman Catholic Church (bishops, priests, brothers, nuns and teachers).

Ten years after the first wave of Roman Catholic clergy sex crimes, SNAP members continue to find healing and empowerment by joining with other survivors in the shared pain resulting from their assault.

Barbara Blaine of Chicago founded SNAP in the midst of the Catholic Church’s 1992 pedophile scandal. Blaine, who was allegedly sexually assaulted by a priest in the Toledo, Ohio, diocese, and SNAP Executive Director David Clohessy continue to strengthen and expand the organization to benefit those suffering trauma inflicted by the clergy.

SNAP focuses on public education and advocacy to prevent further abuse of children within the Catholic Church.

Local meetings are for survivors/family members of Clergy Sexual Abuse (CSA) concerning any religion. These meetings are strictly confidential, and focus on providing a safe environment for survivors.

Local meetings will be from 7 to 9 p.m., the second Friday of every month in YWCA Room A, 4990 E. State St., Rockford. The January meeting is set for Friday, Jan. 13. Local coordinator is Donald Bondick, who can be reached at 226-1021 or 978-8082.

Bondick is the suvivor of alleged clergy sexual abuse, and has been a SNAP member for a number of years.

For more info about SNAP, visit the group’s Web site at

From the Jan. 11-17, 2006, issue

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