|ChrisOLeary.com > Sins of the Fathers > Abuse of the Abused|
You know about the sexual abuse of children by priests of the Catholic church.
What you probably don't know about is what happened -- and what was DONE -- to my fellow survivors and me when we went to our (arch)dioceses for help understanding, and recovering from, the abuse we experienced as children.
We were subjected to an entirely new level of abuse.
Perpetrated by the current leadership of the Catholic Church.
By people like Timothy Cardinal Dolan.
Abuse that, in many ways, was worse -- FAR worse -- than being sexually exploited, abused, and assaulted.
By a priest.
I'm sure some will find that hard to believe, but I lived through it.
And, as of Fall 2019, am still being subjected to it.
The Abuse of the Abused
Yes, the Catholic sex abuse scandal was terrible but, at least, it's a thing of the past.
While kids ARE safer, in too many cases survivors are receiving little to no help.
I first discussed (some of) what was done to me when I tried to get help from ArchStL in...
...but things haven't gotten any better.
If you'd rather listen to or watch me explain what I mean by "the abuse of the abused," you've got two other options...
And, in case you're wondering whether the Vatican, Rome, and the Pope care what's being done to survivors, I've notified them...
...but they don't seem to care.
What do I mean when I talk about the abuse of the abused?
I discuss the abuse of the abused in detail in a number of pieces.
Threats to Expose Confidential Information
The Archdiocese of St. Louis recently threatened to expose confidential information about me, which is at least a violation of the Pope's new document VOS ESTIS LUX MUNDI, if not a criminal act.
The preferred tactic of the Archdiocese of St. Louis when deal with survivors is stonewalling; ignoring survivors' pleas for help, I assume in the hope we will just go away.
It Happened. Or did it?
In early February 2018 I sent an e-mail to the USCCB, trying to blow the whistle on ArchStL. To my surprise, I received the following e-mail admitting It Happened.
February 5, 2018
I wanted to respond to you on behalf of the Archdiocese of Saint Louis.
You chose to litigate (LIE) your claims of sexual abuse by Rev. Leroy Valentine. YOUR CLAIMS WERE ACKNOWLEDGED by Deacon Phil Hengen (LIE), the Archdiocese of Saint Louis (LIE) and the court system (LIE). This matter has been fully settled through litigation and is final. Because your claim has been fully settled and is final the Archdiocese of Saint Louis will not be responding to any further inquiries regarding these claims. Please know that YOU AND ALL VICTIMS OF ABUSE are in my prayers and I do hope that you are able to find peace in the future.
I wish you the best.
While that e-mail from Sandra Price was full of (LIE)s, it did acknowledge my essential truth.
The essence of Gaslighting is leading the victim to question their own reality, and that's exactly what Gabe Jones' statement to Aisha Sultan in April 2018 did to me.
…when asked to comment on O’Leary’s account, “The archdiocese’s record of Mr. O’Leary’s allegations are significantly different; however, due to a court order as well as our own ethical obligation, we are not at liberty to discuss Mr. O’Leary’s case.” Jones also said the information O’Leary shared initially changed multiple times by the time he broke off communication with the Office of Child and Youth Protection.
Of course, I've grown used to being Gaslighted by the Archdiocese of St. Louis, first encountering it when I went to them for help in 2002 and my call was returned by...
False Allegations of Terroristic Threats
Lying to the people of St. Louis to isolate me isn't the only abusive thing ArchStL has done.
ArchStL also used law enforcement to harass, intimidate, and terrorize me.
When Cardinal Law died in late 2017, the USCCB put out a release that mentioned how survivors should contact their local diocesan Assistance Coordinator. I've already discussed how that promise is a sham, but things got even worse.
When I tried to let USCCB know that ArchStL was honoring USCCB's promise of an Assistance Coordinator for survivors, ArchStL called the police.
And told them I had made Terroristic Threats against ArchStL and Archbishop Carlson.
I of course didn't.
What I said was stuff like this, first tweet.
The prospect of going public terrified me, as did a heads-up DM I received from a fellow survivor, all of which led me to publicly express my ability to defend myself.
What's more, this allegation has since leaked out to the members of my (former) parish, leading my last friends to cut off all contact with me.