ATLANTA - A sexual abuse survivor's group alleges the Catholic Church knew about a so-called "predator priest" working in the Archdiocese of Atlanta. The group claims church officials covered up the allegations against him.
“This six were secret until today, we question how many more are secret and our concern is that these men are still out there,” said Barbara Blaine, founder of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
Blaine said she wants the Archbishop of Atlanta to do what 30 other bishops nationwide have done and make public any known sex offenders within the church.
“We say ‘Archbishop (Wilton Gregory) why haven't you?’” Blaine demanded during a press conference on Monday from the steps of the Cathedral of Christ the King on Peachtree Road.
This fight is very personal for Blaine. She said that at the age of 12 she was rape by a member of her church. She reported it to Church officials years later, but nothing happened until she went on Oprah.
"Going on that show forced the church to remove him from ministry, but I found out later he continued to abuse more girls, seven years between the time I first reported and the time his name became public," said Blaine.
Blaine believes there are priests who are still working who have sexually assaulted people, but are flying under the radar. She said the she found the names of six priests who have connections to Atlanta.
She also found a 1986 transcript involving some of Georgia's top Catholic officials discussing indiscretions involving Father Wayland Brown, who at one time, served in Georgia. In 2002, Brown pleaded guilty to child abuse charges in Maryland.
"They left Father Brown out there in the ministry where he could access more children and he did access more children," said Blaine.
The Archdiocese of Atlanta sent a release that states the letter referred to by SNAP officials happened in another diocese. It went on to describe that the six priests listed were never priests of the Archdiocese of Atlanta. “We have no information regarding any allegations of misconduct during the time these men were present here,” the statement read in part.