Victims to leaflet Seal Beach community where convicted priests lived

One admitted to molesting 13 and is part LA priest “document dump,” 

Another served year in jail, abused at least 6 kids

Victims to community: Protect your children and grandchildren

Mahony must stay home from papal election, group begs

What:  Victims of sex abuse and their supporters will have an outreach leafleting outside of the retirement community where two convicted predator priests have recently lived. They will urge residents to:

  • Talk to their grandchildren, neighbors, and family members about child-molesting priests Michael Wempe and Denis Lyons,
  • Read the sex abuse and cover-up files that were recently a part of the LA Archdiocese “document dump,” and
  • Report any suspected abuse to law enforcement.
They will also urge Catholics to:
  • Demand that Cardinal Roger Mahony stay home from the upcoming papal election, and
  • Beg Archbishop Gomez to cooperate completely with law enforcement.

Where: Outside of the main gates of Leisure World, 1901 Golden Rain Road (at Seal Beach Blvd) in Seal Beach Map

When: Thursday, February 21 at 11 am

Who: Three-to-four victims of child sex abuse and their supporters who are members of a support group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, including one Spanish-speaking victim.

Why: Victims of sexual abuse will pass out educational leaflets at the Seal Beach Leisure World retirement community where two convicted predator priests have recently lived. They fear that children visiting family members at the community may be at risk.

Both men, Michael Wempe and Denis Lyons, have been convicted of sexually abusing kids and have been accused of — or admitted to — abusing many others.

Wempe, whose file was a part of last month’s LA Archdiocese document dump, was one of many priests abusing in Los Angeles and protected by Cardinal Roger Mahony. Wempe was convicted in 2006 of sexually abusing a boy, although the former priest admitted to molesting at least 13 other boys during his career in the Los Angeles Archdiocese. According to LA Archdiocese records, Wempe referred to one 12-year-old boy as his “sex partner.”

Wempe’s last known address was in Leisure World.

(Cardinal Mahony, who protected Wempe, will be deposed in another child sex abuse case on Saturday. He is also planning to attend the Conclave to elect the next pope, despite his hands-on role in the cover-up of child sex crimes.)

Convicted Orange County priest Denis Lyons was sentenced to a year in prison in 2012 for abusing a boy at a Costa Mesa Catholic church and school. Lyons was arrested in 2008 while he was playing cards in a community room near his Leisure World home.

Members of SNAP believe that Wempe and Lyons may have posed and still pose a significant threat to children visiting and staying with relatives in the gated community. They also fear that there is a risk that children may have been victimized by these men at Leisure World.

The group also hopes that residents will talk to their families and neighbors about the two men and the risk they may have posed. They are urging residents to report any suspected abuse – no matter the perpetrator – to law enforcement.


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