Protest-Vigil held at San Francisco’s OCA Cathedral
On July 23, 2002, the founders of Pokrov held a protest-vigil for victims of clergy abuse at Holy Trinity Cathedral in San Francisco. Below is the press release that was sent out for the event.
A Press Release for Pentecost demonstration, 2002
Protection of the Theotokos:
A web site for victims of abuse
in the Orthodox Church/ www.pokrov.org
For Immediate Release: June 20, 2002
For Further Information Contact: Greta Larson: 415-820-9645
ADVOCATES FOR VICTIMS OF CLERGY ABUSE HOLD VIGIL OF PROTEST
Protection of the Theotokos: www.Pokrov.org
San Francisco, California…. On Sunday, June 23, 2002 from 9am to 11am, a protest/ prayer vigil will be held by church activists on the corner of Green and Van Ness in San Francisco in front of Holy Trinity Cathedral in remembrance of clergy abuse victims who have been ignored by church hierarchy.
Victim advocates, Cappy Larson and Greta Larson will be offering prayers on behalf of victims they have heard from during the three years they have operated a web site (www.pokrov.org) for victims of clergy abuse in the Orthodox faiths. It is an especially significant occasion because the national hierarch of the Orthodox Church in America, Metropolitan Theodosius, will be visiting from New York. The bishop of the West, Bishop Tikhon, will also be in attendance. The Pokrov.org web site has recently been in contact with both of these church leaders, asking them to turn over records of abuse to civil authorities, but they have been non-compliant so far.
Despite recent public emphasis on Roman Catholic scandals, the Orthodox church, the oldest branch of Christianity, is not immune. Holy Trinity Cathedral, for instance, has had its own abuse scandals — first in 1891, and also in 1991. Holy Trinity Cathedral is the oldest Orthodox parish in
the contiguous United States.
On its pages, Pokrov.org offers articles on prevention and recovery, news articles, prayers for victims, resources and listings — with mug-shots — of Orthodox perpetrators. Founded in June of 1999, Protection of the Theotokos is the only resource currently available specifically for victims of clergy abuse in the Orthodox faiths. The web site can be reached at www.pokrov.org. Theotokos is the Greek word for Mother of God. Pokrov is the Russian/Slavonic word for a special religious icon of Mary, the Mother of God.
According to Greta Larson, the web site’s developer, “The only true scandal to the Church arises when her members by commanding silence in the face of great evil, enable the perpetrator to go on and abuse additional innocents, and deny love, compassion and a voice to the victims.”