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These, the Little Ones
Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D., Founder and President
of Rescue and Recovery, International, Inc.
you for giving me this opportunity to describe the work
of a new non-profit organization called Rescue & Recovery
International, Inc. R&R was founded in April, 2005, for
the purpose of providing direct services to survivors
of clergy and religious sexual abuse. To date, we have
raised approximately $30,000.00 and distributed $30,000.00!
We need your help to keep the work going.
a survivor of clergy abuse myself, I know what it means
to have to “survive” its effects. Many survivors are
homeless, addicted, unemployable, psychologically paralyzed,
and distraught. They barely get through each day. Many
are on permanent disability, the result of severe post
traumatic stress disorder.
Rescue & Recovery
assists survivors directly. We help pay rents, mortgages,
psychologists’ bills, lawyers’ fees, tuitions, and gasoline
and food bills. We have been able to help survivors with
clothing allowances and temporary motel living arrangements.
Whatever survivors need, we provide.
is a major aspect of the mission of R&R. We accompany
survivors to court, diocesan and counseling offices,
assist in hiring attorneys, and stage public protests
and demonstrations when necessary. We have even confronted
priest abusers in their rectories, leading to removal
give you an idea of the clientele of R&R, here are a
few of the sad stories:
is a mother of twin girls. Their father is a Catholic
priest. After P. refused to abort the girls, the “father” stalked
and threatened the family, sexually abusing the girls
and rendering them “poor” and homeless. These women lived
in an automobile until recently when R&R helped secure
housing and legal representation for them.
was abused by a priest for over ten years. He was introduced
to alcohol and drugs by the priest, rendered an addict
by the time he was 15 years old, and used as a sex slave
for several other priests who abused him in the headquarters
of the diocese. R&R appealed to a judge to allow J.B.
to leave prison and get involved in a comprehensive program
of rehabilitation and counseling. R&R has paid for his
was sadistically abused by a priest from the third to
sixth grades. The priest did permanent damage to his
genitalia. The local Archdiocese boasts that it does
not make payments to survivors. Consequently, R&R stepped
in to help R.S.’s family avoid foreclosure on their house,
end of telephone and utility service, and keep them in
food. R.S. cannot keep a job because of the triggers
from his abuse.
was about to be evicted from her apartment and lose her
family’s country home after being abused by her pastor.
R&R stepped in and arranged for payments of back rent
and resolution of the mortgage problem. M.M. is back
to work now, and R&R helped her find an attorney who
has recently filed suit against her abuser.
was abused by his high school chaplain. After a life
of drugs and alcohol, including suicide attempts, he,
his wife, and four children have a place to call home.
R&R helped secure a mortgage for them.
was abused by at least one nun in the 1960’s. When she
went to the order for help, they gave her $10,000.00
and coerced a gag order out of her. Her needs are so
complex that $10,000.00 was a drop in the bucket. She
has returned to the order for more help, but they have
consistently said no. So, R&R stepped in and paid several
months’ rent, secured food, and paid for car repairs.
C.P. is pursuing a legal case against the order.
are the kinds of cases Rescue & Recovery gets involved
with on a daily basis. Notice that our funds go out as
quickly as they come in. We need the help of ordinary
faithful Catholics like those involved in Voice of the
Faithful to keep this mission going. There is no better
cause today than the rescue and recovery of victims of
clergy abuse. As you know, MOST victims will never go
public or report their abuse. They will, however, contact
organizations like R&R and seek assistance anonymously.
Most of our clients are not known to the public.
are attempting to raise $100,000.00 by Christmas of this
year in order to serve the disparate and desperate needs
of survivors. At the current time, there are two of us
on staff. Michael Iatesta is a survivor of Fr. Gerald
Ruane, a priest of the Archdiocese of Newark and an internationally-renowned
healing priest who abused several teenagers in New Jersey.
Michael went public a few months ago, and now wishes
to help his fellow survivors. He is doing a good deal
of the administrative work on a volunteer basis.
am on the road most of the time. I make a trip to Boston
at least once a week to work with some of the thirty
former students of mine who were abused by Msgr. Fred
Ryan, Vice Chancellor of the Archdiocese of Boston. He
was abusing these men while I was teaching and coaching
them in the 1980’s at Catholic Memorial High School in
West Roxbury. In addition, I am working with survivors
from Maine to Florida, New York to California. My car
has logged 115,000 in two years! Yes, that’s 115 thousand
miles in two years!
help is needed! If your means allow, please be the first
to make a significant contribution to this cause. By “significant,” I
mean a donation of $10,000.00 to $100,000.00. Your “infusion” will
really get us off the ground and allow me to visit the
two prisoners I visit regularly; one is in Georgia (abused
by a priest in Newark, NJ and imprisoned because of his
abuse); the other is in Massachusetts (abused by a religious
brother in Atlantic City, NJ and imprisoned because of
is a third prisoner in Massachusetts who was abused by
Ryan. He is not ready yet. Help me get to him! I send
$80.00 per month to one prisoner for “canteen” purposes.
And, I am trying to get them attorneys. If you know of
an attorney who is interested in their cases, let me
what we do…that’s what we need. Please send tax-deductible
contributions to: Rescue & Recovery International, Inc.,
107-10 Shore Front Parkway, Apt. 9F, Rockaway Park, NY
bless Voice of the Faithful!