January 07, 2005

Maine group wants to open dialogue with church about abuse

Foster's Daily Democrat

BANGOR, Maine (AP) ó The people who complained that a party for a priest who was forced to resign was inappropriate have asked Bishop Richard Malone to hold a meeting as soon as next week to open a dialogue between parishioners and clergy.

A letter was sent Thursday to Malone and the Rev. Michael Gendreau, a pastor at two churches in South Portland, asking them to hold a meeting soon.

"We need to get together and talk about this issue," Catherine Morin Campbell, a parishioner in South Portland, said Thursday. "We canít claim to care about abuse victims while allowing possible predators to be publicly honored."

Among those who signed the letter were David Clohessy and Ann Hagan Webb. Both head the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, a support group.

Organizers canceled a reception this week in honor of the Rev. Paul Coughlin, who was ordered to resign in October as pastor of parishes in South Portland.

Posted by kshaw at January 7, 2005 05:42 AM