Keep the Faith, Change the Church.

Press Release - U S SUPREME COURT DENIES PETITION OF BRIDGEPORT DIOCESE

Contact: Jessica Lillie, PR Director, votfpr@votf.org, (781) 559-3360, (314) 749-5188 cell or
Dan Sullivan, Bridgeport Co-Chair (203) 966-3530

For Immediate Release

VOICE OF THE FAITHFUL ASKS DIOCESE TO COMPLY

November 3, 2009-Boston/Bridgeport – After more than seven years of litigation, including two adverse decisions by the Connecticut Supreme Court, the effort by the Diocese of Bridgeport to keep secret more than 12,000 pages of documents pertaining to the abuse of children by priests of the Diocese has been effectively ended by the United States Supreme Court. In a ruling issued yesterday, the Court denied the petition for certiorari filed by the Diocese, meaning that the Court will not hear the appeal of the Diocese. Voice of the Faithful asks the Diocese to cooperate with the Superior Court in Waterbury to ensure the prompt and orderly release of these documents.

“This is the end of a long journey,” said Dan Sullivan, the co-chairman of the VOTF Bridgeport affiliate. “The Diocese has repeatedly emphasized its rights under the Constitution; it should now accept its responsibilities, and participate in a spirit of full cooperation with the Connecticut courts to promptly release all the records covered by the Connecticut Supreme Court’s decision. Further, the Diocese should stop its misinformation campaign regarding this matter. To suggest, as the Diocese did yesterday in its press release acknowledging the denial of its petition, that the Supreme Court had somehow suggested that the Connecticut courts had wrongly decided this case is disingenuous, at best.”

A hearing is scheduled next Monday, November 9, at Waterbury Superior Court to develop a plan for the orderly release of the documents. “We expect it will be a joyous day for the survivor community. I am unaware of any survivors who have objected to the release of these documents during the many years this question has been litigated. We look forward to learning what is in the documents the Bridgeport Diocese has spent so much time and money trying to shield from public review,” said VOTF Executive Director Donna B. Doucette. “It is the hope of Voice of the Faithful and all of our members that this issue can now be settled once and for all. We hope the Diocese will take this opportunity to do what is right.”

For more information about VOTF please visit www.votf.org or the Bridgeport affiliate website at www.votfbpt.org

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Voice of the Faithful (VOTF) is a lay organization formed in 2002 in response to the sexual abuse crisis in the Catholic Church. It started in the basement of a church in Wellesley, Massachusetts, and has since expanded worldwide with more than 150 Parish Voice affiliates and 30,000 members. The entire organization is committed to helping the Catholic Church.