Advocates speak out on diocese findings

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LANSING, MI (WILX) - Advocates for sex abuse survivors are speaking out following new information shaking the local Catholic community.

The Catholic Diocese of Lansing released the names of 17 priests accused of sexually assaulting children.

Advocates tell News 10's Cryss Walker the release of these names can re-victimize survivors all over again.

"If there's anyway that we can help these victims that's really what this, to me that's what this is about. I want them to come forward. I want them to let us know so that we can take care of this and try to bring some healing if we can," said Bishop Earl Boyea of the Diocese Of Lansing

"I think this is a good step by the diocese to name these individuals. I'm sure that took a lot of thinking on their end to make that determination, but I think, when we can say we know these individuals were abusers and we're holding them accountable publicly, that that is a good step to move forward towards healing," said Elizabeth Abdnour, Firecracker Foundation Board Member.

Abdnour says trauma resulting from abuse by people of authority can cause extreme cases of guilt and emotional anguish.

"I think that's another additional level of trauma for these individuals that experienced abuse because their faith community is supposed to be a place that they can be safe. It's sort of a respite from the rest of the world, and so when the abuse happens, there that can be an additional and even a more severe trauma for them sometimes," said Abdnour.

The diocese says several allegations are still pending and more names could be added to the list.

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