July 04, 2005

Diocese urged to release records



BELLEVILLE - The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests are encouraging Belleville Diocese parishioners to make their leaders surrender medical records of a priest accused of sexually abusing children.

Members of the group stood outside St. Peter Cathedral Sunday, passing leaflets to parishioners leaving Mass. The fliers asked them to persuade church leaders to obey Friday's court order to release the medical records of Rev. Raymond Kownacki, 70, who is accused of abusing two boys in the 1970s.

After Sunday's Mass, Bishop Edward K. Braxton said the diocese will continue to fight the Fifth Appellate Court's decision.

"I am in the early stages of studying this case and these documents, but the present advice we have is to appeal the court's decision," Braxton said. "We are not trying to avoid the healing of those who may have been harmed by priest in the past, but we want to protect the privacy of these individuals."

Posted by kshaw at July 4, 2005 09:03 AM