Fund established to support women 'wronged by the church'

Here's a press release from Voice of the Faithful:


August 9, 2010

Erie, PA -- Tomorrow Voice of the Faithful will formally accept a $75,000 donation from Lynette Petruska, a former nun who once served as chaplain at Gannon University in Erie. Ms. Petruksa is donating the money to establish the Emily and Rosemary Fund, which will support women working in the Catholic Church who face financial hardship as a result of discrimination and injustice in the Church.

"I was fortunate to have a profession to which I could return," Ms. Petruska says, "but many women serving the Church find themselves and their families at great risk when targeted by discriminatory practices or when they stand up to injustice. This is my way to help, at least in a small way."

Ms. Petruska, an attorney practicing in St. Louis MO, decided to establish the fund because she herself experienced injustice and discrimination after opposing sexual harassment and other sexual misconduct committed by priests at the university. She later filed a lawsuit against both the university and bishop of Erie PA. She has named the fund after her two grandmothers, women who inspired Lynette with their strength and courage.

Tomorrow Ms. Petruska will be joined by Voice of the Faithful leaders as she presents them with a check for the fund. Voice of the Faithful members and friends of Ms. Petruska have been appointed as a committee to handle the applications and distribution of funds. Application instructions will be available on the Voice of the Faithful web site.

"We look forward to working with Lynette on this fund to help women who have been treated unfairly by the Church," says Bill Casey, of the Voice of the Faithful Board of Trustees. Mr. Casey will be at tomorrow’s announcement.

Read more about the Emily & Rosemary Fund for Women in the Church

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