CASE REPORTS OF THE MORMON ALLIANCE
VOLUME 1, 1995
AFTERMATH AND CONCLUSIONS
Leon M. Fulton is, as of April 1996, still president
of Oklahoma City Park Stake, and Neal Hancock is still bishop of Silver
Ward. Stan Powell attends church regularly. According to a friend of the
McCallisters’ children, "We miss your kids, but it’s so hard to
believe Bishop Powell could have molested Scott. He comes every Sunday
and sits with his family and smiles and shakes hands with everybody like
he’s always done. He goes to activities and is always helping out. It
looks like nothing ever happened. And the ward warmly supports
him." Ward members feel that they have had to choose sides, and for
most of them the choice was not difficult. The McCallisters do not know
if Powell’s excommunication has been lifted. Powell still practices
law; since 1993, he has been under contract to provide legal defense for
indigents, including juveniles, in Kingfisher County.1
Sylvia teaches a teen Sunday School class.
The stake swallowed another scandal in 1995—this
time financial and political—when Patricia Whitehead, gospel doctrine
teacher in First Ward and one of Oklahoma’s highest-profiled Mormons
because of her position as state deputy treasurer, was convicted on
March 1995 of carrying out a two-year kickback scheme with a male
co-conspirator ten years her junior. Whitehead, as chief trader in the
state treasurer’s office, invested idle funds to earn money for the
state and devised a kickback scheme from the one-billion-dollar state
investment trades that netted her about $268,000. Loss to the state was
estimated at $6.7 million. While her attorneys bargained for a reduced
sentence ("she may have engaged in questionable conduct, [but] she
is still a person who has year after year earned the respect and
admiration of her peers"), the manager of the Oklahoma City bishop’s
storehouse for the Mormon Church "offered to supervise Whitehead in
public service work. ... Whitehead could pack food orders for the poor,
sweep floors, stock shelves, and do other work for the charity,"
said the manager.2
The blaming of the victims has not stopped, and it
sometimes takes ironic forms. Right after Merradyth was excommunicated,
a high councilor who had earlier served in clerical and counselor
positions at the ward and stake level, told Steve Allen, the
McCallisters’ son-in-law, "You should have known about Powell’s
being bisexual. Everyone in the stake leadership knew. I thought the
McCallisters knew because they were such good friends with Powell."
He had never mentioned this "knowledge" before, even though he
had been involved on both sides.
Scott married Catie Kennedy on 23 April 1994 in the
Mesa Arizona Temple and their first child, Baylor Scott, was born in
February 1996. Scott is "burying himself in work," according
to Merradyth. "He and his brother-in-law Steve Allen run a
successful water-damage carpet-cleaning business. He no longer sees a
therapist but will consult with his father when he feels stress. It was
very hard on him to have his life on hold for so long when he was
explaining what had happened over and over and nothing was being
done." He is still active in the Church.
Jack and Merradyth started a new business that they
can manage out of their cabin at Cedar Lake, a peaceful retreat for them
and the younger children. They stay in close contact with the rest of
the family. A comforting dream during the spring of 1995 strengthened
I dreamed I was talking candidly to a group of men
who were trying to understand the unseen damage done to a victim of
sexual abuse. I searched their faces to see if anyone showed any
recognition of my torment betrayal, and violation. I felt as if a hole
the size of a bowling ball had been blown through my soul, and I could
feel the wind howl through the cavity, whining with loss, grief,
confusion, and anger. Did anyone understand my rage and sadness? Did
anyone know what it felt like that my innocence, integrity, and
identity were gone forever?
After I finished speaking, about ten men came up
and stood casually around me, shaking hands and talking. I was playing
my social role with ease, but inwardly I was asking myself if anyone
anywhere knew how much it hurt—knew exactly. I looked
searchingly into their eyes, responding to each one. The seventh or
eighth man, who had been standing quietly, put out his hand without
saying a word. For some reason, my eyes dropped to his hand as I
reached for it. In his palm was a round, penny-size scar. A flicker of
curiosity crossed my mind. As if he could read my thoughts, he rotated
his hand as I grasped it so I could see the back. An identical scar,
round, slightly indented, and still pink, marked the back.
Then I realized what caused that kind of wound—a
nail. Warmth radiated from his hand to mine. He did not say a word,
but I felt instant comfort. The only other person who could possibly
know how I felt was Jesus Christ. He too had been betrayed in the
house of his friends. His mission on earth had been to heal the sick,
comfort the distressed, and bless the children. Would he be any
different if he came today? Whom would he seek out? Where would he go?
I looked into his face with eager, dawning wonder.
His eyes spoke his understanding with quiet compassion. I felt his
unconditional love as he gladly took my burden. It instantly became
light. He had performed a quiet miracle. He had come because I needed
him. The vast emptiness in my soul dosed in a flood of warmth. I
wanted to be absorbed in his presence.
That was all. The dream was over. Most of my dreams
are stressful, and I don’t want to remember them. This one was
different, and my understanding of religion would never be the same. I
had grown up thinking that God blessed only the worthy, that I had to
prove my worth by constant acts of righteousness, that we had to earn
God’s presence by strict qualifications, and that God worked
exclusively through a hierarchical patriarchy of priesthood officials.
I learned that God, through his son, ministers to whom he chooses,
when he chooses, and how he chooses. He is not governed by priesthood
protocol. Worthiness is not a prerequisite for his healing care. He
hears our silent screams for help. He comes.
Sundays are days for the family to be together and to
consciously access their spiritual power to heal themselves and each
other. Eleven members of the family are actively pursuing recovery
through therapy, reading, tapes, conferences, discussions, and finding
opportunities to work through issues of shame, control, guilt, anger,
fear, abandonment, body image, forgiveness, and spiritual and sexual
issues. But some siblings are openly skeptical. At least one daughter
frankly thinks that Merradyth’s memories and those of Amber, fourth of
the McCallister children, have no basis in reality. She resents being
put in a Catch-22 situation: "According to Mother, if we don’t
remember abuse, then we’re in denial. If we do, then we need therapy.
Either way, Mother insists that abuse as an issue consumes our
Merradyth and Jack are calm about such divergences.
They do not know everything the children experienced and do not try to
"suggest" memories to them. "The one thing that’s
really clear is that people have to heal on their own schedules,"
says Merradyth. "They remember when it’s safe to remember. They
deal with it when they’re strong enough. We try to let everyone feel
accepted on the level they’re at. It’s taken a lot of hard work not
to manipulate and control their lives because of our fears."
Merradyth feels an urgency to research her genealogy,
finding patterns that suggest multigenerational incest and ritual abuse.
She is heartened by corroborating evidence from several members of her
extended family who are relieved that she has broken the code of
secrecy. "Without hands the stone is rolling down the mountain that
is going to smash all false traditions, dysfunctional family secrets,
and ugly forms of idol worship that are keeping people from accepting
the full atonement of the Savior," she says gently.
In addition to working with their family therapist,
Paula Clinton, M.Ed., Jack and Merradyth work hard and consistently
between sessions. They have found that Karol Truman’s Feelings
Buried Alive Never Die and A Course in Miracles are useful
guides among others. Their lifelong love for the scriptures has never
been deeper or more meaningful. Movingly, Merradyth talks of the joy of
seeing her little children learning to have a direct relationship with a
loving, nonjudgmental Savior—to "talk with him and embrace him
and give their fear and anger and pain to him. We have seen and felt
some great miracles," she said.
Merradyth’s and Jack’s commitment to activism
remains strong. They participate in a number of national advocacy
organizations for abuse victims3 and, in
September 1995, made a ten-minute presentation at the third national
conference of "The Linkup," an organization dedicated helping
the survivors of clergy abuse4 where
they showed a video of Brad Edwards’s investigative series, the
excommunications, and their Sunstone presentation. "Clergy abuse
isn’t just a Mormon problem," they affirmed.
Mary and Nelson and their children stopped attending
church in the spring of 1993 and moved into a different house.
"Every time I see someone from the ward," says Mary,
"they say, ‘We want you to come back and be rebaptized.’ I say,
‘There’s a small problem. What am I supposed to repent of?’ Bishop
Hancock has said, ‘We’d like to have you back.’ And I say, ‘You
haven’t cleaned up Silver Ward yet. Call me when you do."’
The excommunication of their mother was very
difficult for Mary’s older children. They were very supportive of her
but also very angry at the disruption to their lives. "Our
foundations were shaken," says Mary. "The Church was
everything to us, every day. This tore away our family traditions,
shredded even our family schedule, ripped away my children’s friends
and their belief structure. They were all angry at being invalidated the
way they were. Jay and Justin are doing really well, especially since
Jay has had therapy and counseling. He was much angrier than the other
children, I think because he saw things coming. He wanted to be heard
and we weren’t listening. He expressed a lot of anger at all
authorities. Part of it was just normal teenage rebellion, but the
lightning strikes at home."
Jay was walking across a parking lot in Piedmont when
a teenage acquaintance from school agreed to give him a ride across the
lot on his bumper. The driver accelerated, then braked sharply. When Jay
fell off, the driver accelerated again, deliberately ran over him,
laughed, and then drove off. He was a boy who "said morbid things
all the time" and bragged about belonging to "the cult in
Piedmont." Jay suffered severe bruises and second and third degree
burns from asphalt abrasions, and had to walk on crutches for six weeks
but he had no broken bones. The police did not arrest the teenage
When Mary received a visit soon afterwards from a
former bishop Melvin Knott and Quentin Adair from the high council,
Knott asked, "What did [the driver] mean by cult? Not our
ward!" "No," she rejoined sarcastically. "I guess it
was another cult." Both men fell silent and stared uncomfortably at
the carpet. Mary had said the unspeakable word in his presence.
Mary felt that the lack of legal action was almost
predictable. She knew the sheriff from his dealings earlier with
Roseanne and felt little respect for him. In a "Town Meeting"
sponsored by high school students that included her daughter, someone
had asked, "What about when your parents hit you?" He had
responded: "As long as it’s only with a fist, we’re not going
to say they’re breaking the law."
Daughter Rama has been treated like a "social
outcast," confused by "intimidation from ecclesiastical
authorities. To have your best friends shun you is not easy to deal
with," says Mary. "When you’re a teenager, how do you handle
that quick, scalding rejection from those who called you family since
before you were born?" She speaks wryly of relationships snapped in
her own life: "Everyone chooses sides real quick when you get
excommunicated. Your own family may not be all that loyal to you. Fewer
and fewer want to talk. They don’t really want to hear. They don’t
really want to know. They would rather believe that you made the
mistake, because the Church is so big and you’re so little."
But she expresses confidence in the future. "I
know that in the gardens of the hereafter, we’re going to look back
and see this whole episode as just a speed bump on the road."
In the aftermath of this case, which has left at
least three families alienated from the Church—and possibly more,
depending on the decisions of the twenty children involved as they marry
and establish their own families—what could or should have been done?
All of them—the McCallisters, Plourdes, and Haleses, whether lifetime
members or converts, were living their whole emotional and family lives
within the Church and began this experience with an unquestioning first
loyalty to the Church. Despite Jack’s abuse by Bishop Mercer, they
trusted the Church leaders to make things right. That betrayal was more
shattering than the abuse itself, and it raises the question: once trust
between leaders and members is breached, how can it be rebuilt?
No doubt the stake leaders, area presidencies, and
General Authorities felt justified in taking a highly cautious and
conservative approach on the McCallisters’ and Hales’s testimony,
for fear that the accusations might be false. But it is less clear why
they were so reluctant to investigate, why the single investigation by
Putnam was so passive, and why the stake presidency were so reluctant to
share the results with those most affected. It is particularly
perplexing that their reluctance and public silence persisted even after
Stan Powell’s arrest for masturbating in front of an undercover police
officer became known. It is equally mystifying that they did not take
the most straightforward steps toward establishing the truth of the
McCallisters’ claims—by taking prompt and proactive steps to invite
boys in Scott’s peer group and men in Jack’s to share any relevant
concerns in an unintimidating environment, and by checking with the
bishop and stake president to whom Jack had reported the abuse in great
distress as a member of the bishopric during the 1980s.
The McCallisters’ conclusion—that the priesthood
leaders thought Scott was lying—does not seem unjustified given the
reluctance, the secrecy, and the lack of active ministering to the
family’s needs. Jack says: "When we set out to warn parents and
children, we hit a series of stonewalls, each fiercely guarded by high
priests. We expected a serious investigation. Instead, we witnessed
damage control—the use of emotional and spiritual intimidation from
every contact with LDS priesthood leadership, without exception."
A vicious circle was created early by the perceived
lack of trust. Leaders withdrew into silence and concentrated on image
management. Knowledge would make them responsible, so they
"protected" themselves from finding out. They projected
invulnerability instead of active concern. Perhaps the additional
McCallister family issues—the financial stresses, the disruption in
the teenage lives of the children (despite such evidence of commitment
as Tara’s and Scott’s missions and the temple marriages of Tara,
Shanan, and Scott), and Jack’s residual trauma from his own abuse,
complicated by his Vietnam experience—frightened away priesthood
leaders so that they either would not or could not offer compassionate
However, it seems clear that the McCallisters would
have gratefully welcomed an offer of priesthood blessings for themselves
and for the children and an offer of counseling for those who needed it.
Their repeated concerns about the safety of the children would have been
largely met by a commitment from the stake leadership to provide open
training on sexual abuse issues for leaders and members. Apparently one
stake leadership training meeting on abuse has been held, but nothing
has been made available to the membership in general.
It is also clear how grateful Roseanne was for the
initial belief and support of her bishop and her stake president in
Abilene. She testifies to the importance of the priesthood blessings she
and the children received. Yet her bishop ended up disbelieving her and
threatening to discipline members of her family, and she ended up
feeling that she would put her children in danger if she continued to
Unquestionably, the McCallisters, Haleses, and
Plourdes held the regional, area, and General Authorities in high esteem
and hoped, right up to the brink of the excommunications, that one more
effort to explain the situation would bring understanding and effective
intervention. These hopes were also dashed.
Jack and Merradyth celebrated their thirtieth wedding
anniversary on 7 April 1996. It happened to be Easter Sunday, the
closing day of April general conference, and the airing of the fourteen
and a half minute segment on the Mormons on CBS’s investigative news
show, "60 Minutes." Responding to interviewer Mike Wallace’s
question about sexual abuse in the Church and priesthood leaders who
sided with the abusers, President Hinckley minimized both problems:
"I don’t think there’s any substance to it. Now, there’ll be
a blip here, a blip there, a mistake here, a mistake there. But by and
large the welfare of women and children is as seriously considered as is
the welfare of the men, in this church, if not more so."5
Jack looked up "blip" in the dictionary. It meant: "to
technically erase or override recorded sounds." He commented with
deep anger: "Those sounds are the heartbreaking moans and muffled
screams of the victims, rising to heaven for relief and healing."
The outcome could easily have been different.
Compassion and care offered from stake, regional, and general
ecclesiastical officers to these families in confusion and agony would
have been healing and welcomed, right up to the summer of 1994; but the
distancing, the scoldings and lectures, the continual return of the
issue to the local level, and the "lecturing" tone of some of
the communications all communicated to the families involved that they
were wrong, bad, and expendable. Perhaps these officers were offended by
the anger the McCallisters felt and communicated. Perhaps they,
accustomed to anxious and eager deference from members, decided to stand
on their dignity instead of ministering to members in pain. But how
would the experience have been different for all concerned if even one
General Authority had made a sufficient effort to empathize, expressed a
willingness to learn, or communicated recognition of the trauma of the
abuse and its secondary effects?
Such a scenario is not impossible. Elder Eduardo
Ayala, formerly of the Seventy, recounted that President Kimball, after
the first area conference in Chile, a gathering that drew 15,000 Mormons
from four countries to a stadium, asked "to see the children."
In the "great silence" that followed, President Kimball
greeted "about two thousand children one by one, crying as he shook
their hands or kissed them or put his hands on their heads and blessed
them." The children, hushed and still, also wept as they looked at
him, and President Kimball said "he’d never felt this kind of
spirit in his life."6 A prophet was
willing to minister to two thousand children, one by one. Where is the
ministry to the twenty children in these three families?
The visits by two General Authorities to the Hales
family acknowledged no reason for visiting—not the children’s abuse,
Roseanne’s divorce, her health, her financial situation, Keith’s
painful estrangement from his beloved mission president, or the family’s
inactivity. In some ways, the bright pretense that nothing was wrong
only mocked their suffering and deepened their mistrust. Although the
Haleses are supportive of one another, they do not all understand or
interpret their experiences in the same way, and these divisions are
deeply painful. As they struggle to maintain their faith while
simultaneously maintaining a safe distance from the Church, they cling
to their faith in the Savior but frequently feel wearied by the burdens
Nearly every written communication from an officer
included an expression of "love"—but this message lacked
conviction when it was combined with personal coldness and punishing
official actions. Jack McCallister summarizes the skepticism with which
he now regards such statements: "When a church official says he
loves you, I always wonder what it means. I’ve been ‘loved’ by a
bishop before. I don’t think I want any more.
No one in the McCallister, Plourde, or Hales family
wants to carry a grudge or harbor resentment. For all of them, moving
beyond bitterness toward forgiveness is an important part of their
healing. Although each would express that quest in individual terms,
perhaps Jack’s thoughts will form an adequate conclusion:
The greatest challenge I face is that of my own
personal spiritual recovery. I have had to struggle to free myself
from the constant fear of unworthiness and the constant
institutionalized shame. I have succeeded, thanks to personal faith in
Christ’s atonement based on his pure, unconditional love. I can no
longer accept that any institution can claim an exclusive right to all
truth. Christ’s declaration that "I am the way, the truth, and
the life" is a personal description, an invitation to follow him.
God intends for all of his children to share in his love and healing.
It is inconsistent with the nature of God to franchise his power only
to a few, like a fast food chain. We are all created in the image of
God, not just the few, the proud, the self-appointed elite. We all
have an equal right to receive and share God’s gracious gifts.
When he said, "Many are called but few are
chosen," I think he was calling us to receive his immediate love
and healing. If we do, then we can go and do likewise. Being chosen is
a sign of our willingness to receive, not our worthiness to receive.
I feel as if I’ve worn an invisible "A"
all my life. First it stood for "ashamed"—how I felt about
my sexual victimization as a teenager. Then it stood for
"apostate," a label pasted on me by priesthood officials for
speaking up to protect children against sexual abuse. Now, two years
away from those turbulent events, I can truthfully say that it stands
for "awakening." I have finally begun to awaken to the
reality of being embraced by Jesus Christ in my imperfect state and
being healed from my incorrect perceptions. I celebrate my awakening.
I am grateful for it. I welcome more enlightenment.
Overcoming my fear to forgive was my final
frontier. It takes a lot of energy to forgive someone who has sexually
abused you. It takes even more effort to forgive someone who has
sexually abused your wife and children. It takes intense purpose to
forgive all of the LDS priesthood officials who spiritually abused all
of us. It takes reborn faith to forgive God for allowing all this
trauma. And finally, it takes a miracle to forgive yourself for being
a vulnerable human being.
I have come to understand that to God all miracles
are equal in terms of difficulty. For him, parting the Red Sea was no
more difficult than taking my burden of anger, fear, and shame that
had accumulated over a lifetime.
My motivation to forgive is internal, not external.
It comes from my need for my own spiritual and emotional relief. I
went through a long process in approaching forgiveness. I had to
decide that I deserved healing. I had to decide that I wanted to have
faith in God and his ability to take the emotional burden away and
heal all of the areas that had been infected with anger. I had to
decide that I was willing to trust God’s process, that I would not
try to control the outcome, and that anger, fear, and shame were
making me insane.
I came to these ideas slowly because my priesthood
leaders had hammered away that it was my "duty to forgive the
offenders." Every time I heard that speech, I was filled with
anger and shame—anger that they hid from their own responsibility
and accountability behind this way to blame me and searing, spearing
shame that I could not obey this commandment. I knew that to forgive I
had to correctly understand God’s perception of the forgiveness
I started out with a list of what forgiveness was
not. Forgiveness is not forgetting about the abuse or abuser.
Forgiveness is not an obligation imposed on the victim. Forgiveness is
not silence or keeping secrets. Forgiveness is not condoning
inappropriate, harmful behavior. Forgiveness is not minimizing the
trauma. Forgiveness is not denying that it ever happened. Forgiveness
is not willingness to be revictimized. Forgiveness is not helplessness
to heal from the trauma. And forgiveness is not necessarily wanting to
have lunch together.
I already knew that forgiveness was not vengeance.
I reasoned that no sane person would abuse another—spiritually,
sexually, physically, or emotionally. So all abuse has a core of
insanity in it All offenders need to be healed from their insane ideas
or the abuse will recur. It would be insane not to want sanity for all
of God’s children, since we are all interconnected and
interdependent. I had to be willing to release my judgements against
my abusers. Instead of wanting them condemned to hell, I decided to
commend them to healing. I had to decide that God’s grace was
sufficient to accomplish my healing and theirs.
At that point, I understood forgiveness to be my
willingness to ask God to remove my intensely painful feelings from
the memory of the abuse and to help me release the abusers to
experience the best good that they could accept from God. If God is
willing to take away my pain and heal me, I realized, I would be
insane not to allow him to do it. And I would be ungrateful and
manipulative not to want him to heal everyone else afflicted by any
form of the same insanity. At this stage, I did not feel obligated to
forgive the abusers. It felt like a gift freely given, a recognition
of the insanity they were trapped in.
I had to give up my fear that forgiveness meant not
caring any more—not caring about the children who had been abused
and who were still at risk. I wanted the pain I had experienced to
mean something. I wanted it to make me willing to serve. I support
universal healing, not denial. The first priority must be to protect
the children from the offenders, not protect the institution from the
negative publicity created by the abuse. Professional and spiritual
intervention are required to effect a permanent, positive change.
I discovered a sequence to forgiving: (1) trust God
as my higher power, (2) release my painful emotions to him, (3) accept
God’s healing into my life, and (4) serve God’s will, not my own.
Of the three negative emotions, anger, fear, and
shame, anger was the hardest to let go of. Anger has always given me a
false sense of empowerment and strength. I was reluctant to release my
feelings of anger because I did not want to feel vulnerable and
defenseless again against sexual or spiritual assault, but this task
became easier when I realized that anger gave me only an illusion of
power and strength. I wanted the reality instead.
I had to struggle with my own limited faith. Could
I trust God to be there? I believed that God was capable of taking my
burden, but I did not know if he was willing to do so. Was there a way
to test him? What if I felt emotional relief but it was only
temporary? The questions were real, but I also realized that my faith,
though fragile, was sincere. I wanted to trust God completely. The
hope of relief was better than no hope at all. And I was so tired of
struggling with the whole load myself.
In a simple, meditative prayer, I asked God to come into my life to
take away my pain and correct my wrong perceptions. I asked him to
heal my abusers by removing their incorrect perceptions. I asked him
to permanently remove the unbearable burden.
I testify, humbly and with joy, that he did. God immediately took
forty years of pain, anger, and shame from me. I extended my
forgiveness as a free gift to my abusers, released them to God for
their highest and best good. I feel free. The pressures of anger,
shame, and fear are gone. I have not missed their turmoil in my life.
I feel healed. I feel God’s unconditional love. I feel his constant
care. I feel whole and complete. My heart is filled with praise and
gratitude for God’s grace and love.
Notes for Chapter 17: (Click on the Back
button to return to the note reference.)
1 Photocopies of
"Oklahoma Indigent Defense System Trial Level Representation
Contract Bid Proposals" for fiscal years beginning July 1,1993,
July 1, 1994, and July 1, 1995. According to Powell’s résumé,
attached to the bid proposal, he has been an indigent public defender in
Kingfisher County since 1991, and earlier has "been engaged in the
defense of Indigent Clients since 1979." His 1994 bid contract in
four areas gave "anticipated" figures for each class of case;
juveniles was the smallest figure with five, compared to felonies (40),
misdemeanors (16), and mental (12).
2 John Parker,
"Ex-Trader Argues 10-Year Sentence Doesn’t Fit Crime," Daily
Oklahoman, 24July 1995,1.
3 Other national
conferences that that they have attended and found useful for networking
are MALE (Men Assisting, Leading, and Educating), for male sexual abuse
survivors, Denver, in April 1995. 1-800-949-MALE; Link-Up: Survivors of
Clergy Abuse, Chicago, August 1995, 1-800-LINK-UP-6; VOICES (Victims of
Incest Can Emerge Survivors), Indianapolis, November 1995,
1-800-7-VOICE-8; Mungadze Association, Dallas, November 1995,
1-800-388-1838 (for survivors of dissociative disorder and multiple
personalities from ritual abuse); Kempe Center Foundation for incest
survivors, headed by former Miss America Marilyn Van Derbur Atler,
Oklahoma City, April 1996, 303-321-3963. FAX: 303-322-9374. Jack and
Merradyth are eager to talk to other survivors of Mercer’s and Powell’s
abuse, (405) 284-6484.
4 According to the
executive director, Tom Economus (Letter to Jack and Merradyth
McCallister, 17 January 1995), "The Linkup is an Ecumenical
national response to an assault on innocence and faith. Linkup is the
largest Advocacy group of its kind with over 5,000 members. Linkup seeks
to assist victim/survivors [to] confront the facts of their abuse, to
obtain the resources necessary to heal themselves, to assert their legal
right, and to urge all institutional churches to develop and fully
implement responsible, accountable policies and procedures."
5 Transcript and videotape in my
6 Eduardo Ayala, "Friend to
Friend," The Friend, March 1996, 6-7.