So, it should not really be news that the advocacy group SNAP - Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests - has been pulled into 2 lawsuits against the Roman Catholic Church in Missouri. As THE NEW YORK TIMES reports, although the group is not a plaintiff in the cases, members have been subpoenaed 5 times in the past few months to be deposed. Also the organization's e-mail has been subjected to discovery.
The Church seems to be maintaining its stance that it is a decentralized body, therefore, responsibility for the behavior of individual priests falls on the local authorities. That means the bishops are supposed to be held responsible for decisions related to the alleged sexual abuse. The Vatican supposedly gets off the hook. The TIMES article notes that the spokesperson for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Sister Mary Ann Walsh said that U.S. bishops didn't join together in setting policies about how litigation should be handled.
The e-mail sweep is yet another reminder to be circumspect in electronic communications.