Joelle

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Joelle ~ In my Catholic high school, my perpetrator was a choir teacher. He got me pregnant towards the end of my senior year. I had an abortion. When I was talking to the doctor, afterwards, they said, "You have to be treated for a sexually-transmitted disease." So not only did the guy get me pregnant, but he passed on an STD to me.

[AA] Mary G., who referred me to you, said that school has a record of seven priests who've molesting and raping children? ...is that correct.

[J] Right now, we have the number at eleven. That includes priests and lay personnel, who have either admitted or have had critical allegations of sexual abuse. The Diocese also has said, that there are up to ten additional perpetrators, but they won't name names at that school. So, that number could go up to twenty or twenty-one. The name of the school, is, Matter Dei. It's in Santa Ana, California. All the stuff we're dealing with right now, is a case from that school. I advocate for victims, and bring public attention to them. So, let's say we find out something is wrong. The Church can't stand up in front of a courthouse having a press event, saying, ‘You're hurting survivors.' But, I can. And I can stand up in front of a courthouse, like last week ...we had the Covenant of the Faithful, I can sit out in front of the courthouse and rip up a copy of that Covenant, and say, ‘He's slapping the faces of survivors, because he's not adhering to his Covenant. He's paying high fees to attorneys to do nothing but hurt survivors. They blame survivors for their own abuse' ...and so forth. I can do that. And, I can be that media presence, so any survivor that's watching television or looking at the newspaper can say, ‘Oh my gosh, I'm not alone.' And, so people can know.