Together We Heal

Together We Heal is for any who suffer from the trauma of childhood sexual abuse. We provide a safe forum for survivors of abuse to share, learn and heal. We work to expose sexual predators and their methods of getting into our lives.

SNAP News Conference in Fort Myers Florida

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Barbara Blaine and I had a SNAP news conference this week helping to make the people in Fort Myers aware of a sexual predator priest. We requested that the local Bishop help prosecute this admitted child molester…as of yet no response worthy of justice for this victim. But as David Clohessy tells us, anytime we are able to get the message out, it’s a success. We will never waiver in our efforts to protect children from these sexual predators.

If you live in the Fort Myers area, please let the church officials at St. Francis Xavier know you are not satisfied with their inaction to prosecute and ineffective leadership. Together we can make a difference in the lives of children, and together we can help protect the children if this parish leadership fails to do so.

Author: Together We Heal

In 2006 David took the first step in a long and painful journey back from the abyss of addiction and self-destruction. He promised his dying father that he would get clean. And he did. But as he cleaned his body and soul, he began to confront the sexual abuse that his addiction had for so long obscured — abuse perpetrated by a church youth minister when David was 12 to 15 years old. Those three years of abuse destroyed the foundation of love and faith that had been built by his family. For 25 years, David kept the abuse secret and lost himself in a fog of drugs and alcohol. He was by turns destitute, at times incarcerated. The promise to his dying father was the catalyst. And the bedrock of his mother’s love and devotion was the foundation on which David rebuilt his life. Therapy, 12-step meetings, and soul-deep determination were the bricks and mortar. David founded Together We Heal to provide fellow survivors and their families, guidance through the trauma of childhood sexual abuse. In 2015 he was asked to become a part of the Child Safeguarding Initiative team with GRACE (Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment) to empower the Christian community through education and training to recognize, prevent, and respond to child abuse. David represents Together We Heal & GRACE across the country as a public speaker and instructor; teaching churches, schools, and families how to talk with their kids about sexual abuse, how to better identify predatory behavior, and how to properly respond to those harmed. "To the world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world.” - Dr. Seuss

One thought on “SNAP News Conference in Fort Myers Florida

  1. Great job of getting the word out about a dangerous person in a position of power and authority who needs to be prosecuted. Barb and Dave are tireless advocates who I have immense respect for, and who have opened-up the conversation about abuse in ways that I only dreamed possible 30 years ago when I began speaking out. They are brilliant strategists, who are as focused as lasers on the most important issue facing us — protecting children.

    This could also be yet another instance where a local prosecutor is not acting due to the status of the accused. Too often we see public officials and citizens with prominence go free due to their status. I would pressure the local prosecutor to act, as they have the power to go over the heads of church officials to see that justice is done, and children are protected. If prosecutors and other law-enforcmement would stop looking at which way the political winds are blowing, and do their jobs, more of these cases would be prosecuted and more pedophiles would serve prison-time.

    I actually had to sit through a therapy session once where I listened to the “trauma specialist” tell me that “priests don’t do well in prison” and that they belong in these country club “treatment centers” that the Church has built to serve their own. She also remarked that she thought that “incest offenders should do at least a little jail time” — this is a woman who did court evaluations for one of my local jurisdictions. If we are going to see true change, we must work at all levels of the criminal justice machine to see that these people are truly “trauma-informed” and that they understand that “incest-offenders” are the worst of the worst who will not only abuse children within their own home, but they will frequently go after any vulnerable child. Incest has frequently been viewed as the less serious form of abuse, and only recently have some prosecutors more aggressively prosecuted these horrific crimes. And then there is the issue of local prosecutors who are of a certain faith who will not pursue these cases as to not upset their own parishes. This is no different than the prosecutors who tanked my cop/father/rapist’s case because he was one of their own, and they didn’t want to expose his crimes to a community who would have been outraged.

    Not prosecuting these pedophiles is the easy way out. Who among them has the courage to take this case?

    Good work, everyone. It does not go unappreciated and unnoticed by me and many like me.


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