Portland Archdiocese Sponsors Priest Abuse Support Group

KATU 2 News [Portland, Oregon]
May 13, 2003

PORTLAND - The Archdiocese of Portland is sponsoring a 10-week support group for people who were sexually abused as children by Catholic priests.

The free sessions will be led by Doctor Jonathan Beamer, a Portland psychiatrist who has worked with abuse victims for 15 years.

Beamer, who is not Catholic, says it's unclear how many people might take part.

And he says he realizes that some who have been abused by priests might be reluctant to seek help from archdiocese-sponsored therapy.

But he says he has no connection to the archdiocese, and just wants to help people move on.

Beamer plans to screen prospective clients during the summer and begin the sessions in September.

More than 130 people have sued Oregon's two archdioceses in the last three years, seeking more than 500 million dollars.

The lawsuits allege abuse from 1938 to 1984 and involve more than 35 clergy, many of whom have since died.


Any original material on these pages is copyright © 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.