Some of the "Sidewalk Protesters" in front of the Cathedral in Boston
New Hampshire Protest
Call for Law to resign
Protesting in New Hampshire
We will not be silenced!
More New Hampshire protests
Protesting in Maine
A bumper sticker for New Hampshire
Protests seen around the world!
Donations will be used for signs, banners, buttons, leaflets, and other materials used to promote our cause to hold the bishops accountable and seek justice for the victims. We also have given scholarships to survivors wanting to attend SNAP conferences and have sent many donations to the survivors in Haiti.
Sttop was formed in response to the January 2002 revelations of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church. One survivor, Kathy Dwyer, recently explained what our weekly vigils have meant to her saying that we have been
"Making visible what was invisible...
Please click here STTOP or scroll down for more information about what we do.
HAPPY NEW YEAR...
MAY 2014 BRING US RENEWED COMMITMENT TO CREATING A WORLD WHERE ALL ADULT SURVIVORS OF SEXUAL ABUSE FIND THE SUPPORT THEY NEED TO HEAL AND WHERE THE CHILDREN OF TODAY AND TOMORROW ARE ABLE TO WALK WITH LESS RISK OF BEING SEXUALLY ABUSED BY ANYONE.
Twelve years after large numbers of survivors of sexual abuse by priests publicly came forward, and decades after other survivors and Father Tom Doyle came forward, the United Nations, in early February of 2014, released a critical report on the Vatican's behavior regarding sexual abuse by clergy. This report, like so many others, clearly states how the church for decades has denied, covered-up, protected abusers and reabused victims. Hopefully, this report will help to bring more people to consciousness regarding the lack of accountability and change by this corrupt institution. Unfortuntely, it has only brought more of the same from the hierarchy of the church as they immediately began to deny, rationalize, blame and minimize all that was reported.
And so, we continue to stand in vigil and protest each Sunday. We do it to support survivors and to let people know that while what the church says may have changed the behavior the church does has not and our children are really no safer now than when the adult survivors were abused.
Come join us any Sunday at 11AM at the Cathedral of Holy Cross, Washington Street , Boston, MA
DEMONSTRATION TOMORROW, OCTOBER 17, 2013
Join us tomorrow for a demonstration on the sidewalk outside the
This is where Cardinal Sean O'Malley will be hosting a breakfast for Massachusetts legislators
We will make known to those attending that legislators need to call for a vote on House Bill 1455 and Senate Bill 633, not only because childhood sexual abuse victims should get their day in court but indeed, so that our laws better reflect the horror and life long legacy that victims suffer.
Another year of protesting the RED MASS
Sttop protesters interviewed by the Irish Central Newspaper
Lawyers and Judges and other folks, since the 13th century, have been attending a yearly "Red Mass" offered by the catholic church in order to bless them and instruct them to perform their duties with "integrity". Think the church might need some instructions on that one.
STTOP SUMMER CELEBRATION
On August 26, 2013 those members of STTOP that were able attended what has become a yearly tradition of gathering in support, celebration and love. The spirit, commitment and love of those not able to attend was recognized, honored and celebrated by us all as we lunched at the Nantasket Resort Hotel and returned to Ruth's beautiful home to celebrate the August birthdays of Rosemary, Steve and Lucia. I think the pictures below say it all....
On Ruth's deck...
The birthday cake beyond all birthday cakes...
August 11, 2013 @ the Cathedral in Boston
Pictured above: STTOP members at the cathedral of the Holy Cross Boston:
Pictured above on July 21, 2013: Robert, a survivor and STTOP member from the beginning, stopped by to stand with us this morning. He is pictured at the end right. Other regular "sidewalkers" today included, Left to Right: Bob, Eileen, Stan, Ken, Steve. Not in the photo because she took it was our wonderful Ruth!
PLEASE THINK ABOUT STOPPING BY SOME SUNDAY....WE HAVE PLENTY OF SIGNS, CONVERSATION AND DETERMINATION AND WOULD LOVE TO HAVE YOU STAND WITH US!
Pictured above: July 14, 2013: Ruth took this picture and reports that "we had many questions to answer this morning at the cathedral". Pictured L to R are Rosemary, Paul, Bob and Steve. Other two people had stopped to ask questions.
On Sunday, May 20, 2012 STTOP and other friends gathered at the cathedral of the Holy Cross to protest Boston Cardinal O'Malley's paying of high priced lobbyist to prevent the Statute of Limitations on sex crimes against children from passing. His and the Catholic Church's hypocrisy of saying one thing (i.e., we are about protecting the children) and doing another thing must not be tolerated and must be made visible.
The conference/celebration was wonderful and inspiring. Our speakers, performers and those who attended truly made this weekend a special moment in time. STTOP was honored to be a sponsor and we thought you might like to see the ad we placed in the program book.
Rosemary is well into her eighth decade and continues to stand with the sidewalk protesters as weather and her health permit. She was at the confernece all weekend including Sunday at the cathedral.
November 27, 2011 with the Mt Carmel School LA poster
The Ballad of Cardinal Bernard Law
The clergy had never seen before,
Generations protest together
Maybe the bull horns will let you hear us!
The Women Speak!
Protesting with artwork
And the crime is Rape!
Support the repeal of the Statute of Limitations on sex crimes in your area!
We have learned much these past years and we look up to and stand with those who came before and those here now who refuse to be silent!
Working to shatter the silence and end the secrecy
To say it was a difficult time here in Boston would be a huge understatement. Day after day the media was filled with more revelations about the horrors of being sexually abused by someone you were taught was next to God and who you must respect, trust and obey . Day after day victims who had never before told anyone that they had been sexually abused by a priest were coming forward and speaking their truth to those who would listen telling them that the same priest who may have comforted others in sorrow and celebrated with others in joy, was at the same time, sexually abusing them in the rectory, the church or any other place he could find. And finally, when tens of thousands of church documents were released and made public as a result of court orders, the denial of a few good Catholics finally began to disintegrate leaving in its' ashes feelings of betrayal, outrage and sorrow.
It was from those ashes that early in 2002 STTOP was born for the purpose of supporting survivors and demanding responsibility and accountability from the Catholic Church. Since we first came together, STTOP has been one of the lead organizers of countless demonstrations, protests and vigils including Solidarity marches, Red Mass Protests and weekly Sunday protests at various churches and cathedrals throughout the country. Carrying signs calling for resignations, responsibility and accountability initially we were met with anger, threats and reprimands such as when a parishioner scolded us for demonstrating during Lent but quickly disappeared when a survivor responded "...but they raped me during Lent".
In time the initial anger we were first met with began to lessen, especially in those places where we demonstrated often and/or where we carried pictures of adult survivors as children, many of whom were dressed in Holy Communion dresses or suits. Indeed, in time some parishioners would thank us for being there and tell us to keep up the "good work". But of all the reactions and responses we have received over the years none has made what we do more worthwhile than when someone comes to us and quietly tells us that they too had been sexually abused by a priest as a child. Such was the case of an older man, well into his seventies who looked as devout as any Catholic could look leaving Mass. As he walked towards us none of us were quite sure whether he was going to yell, spit or ignore us. As he slowly approached our place on the sidewalk, he began to cry and in seconds was being held as he told us that between the ages of 8 and 10 he too had been sexually abused by a priest and up until this moment, he had never told anyone. More than his tears rained on the sidewalk that day...and I believe more than our spirits received a little additional healing as well.
And so, we continue to demonstrate and demand accountability. It's been awhile since we have used the bullhorns, but our message and philosophy remains loud and clear...strong and consistent. We demand accountability...we demand resignations of corrupt bishops and cardinals...we refuse to allow the sexual abuse of children and adults to be swept into invisibility... we recognize and honor the right of each individual to speak from her/his heart...we will not forget what has, is and will continue to happen unless accountability and meaningful change takes place in both the religious and secular communities. This web site is an extension of our commitment and a record of what we have done, what we are doing and what actions are being planned. We hope that you will click on the links and that you find the resources, transcripts of speeches and pictures of some of the "Action for Changes" we have co-sponsored and participated in helpful. We welcome your comments and wish each of you support as you do the work you have been called to do. Thank you again for visiting our site!
We say STTOP!
JOIN US NOW as we and many others continue to support survivors and to work towards creating a more safe, sacred and secure society for all children and adults.
While STTOP! works with many groups and individuals regarding clergy sex abuse, STTOP! neither endorses nor promotes the specific opinions on other matters and/or mission statements of any group or individual listed on our site.