Apology should be followed by action

Apologies are not enough When you’re wronged, it’s nice to hear the words, “I’m sorry, please forgive me.” I learned that much in Catholic school — a long, long time ago. I also learned that apology alone is never enough. We need to mend what we break and promise never to do it again.However, Pope Francis […]

Six Decisions to Make for Happiness and Success

Did you know happiness and success are your decision? For many who have been abused – by a priest, or any other authority figure – feelings of happiness and success can be hard to come by. Abuse can take the foundation out from under you, leaving powerlessness and helplessness as the norm. I struggled for […]

The Power of Story: Our greatest tool for healing, change & connection

Stories About Story As I prepared to send out copies of my memoir, SPLIT, A Child, A Priest, and the Catholic Church to reviewers, I decided to include a letter with each one. So last week I worked with a designer to create a letterhead. When she asked if I wanted a tag line on […]

Happy Veterans Day – To all kinds of veterans

If you think about it, the veterans we honor this Veterans Day are actually survivors. They have come through terrific conflicts, hardships, pain, injury, devastating losses of comrades. Theirs is a vast sacrifice and they deserve every ounce of honor and support we can give them, on this day and any other. But as we […]

Sexual Abuse Rings Flourishing Because They’re Good for Business?

Profiting off sexual abuse rings It’s time law enforcement and victims groups took a hard look at the operations surrounding sexual abuse rings. From The Western Daily Press: “Police chiefs in Wiltshire have made six arrests as part of a major day of action against child sexual exploitation to try to prevent ‘another Rotherham’ happening […]

Wake Up Vatican: The Scandal of Sexual Abuse by Priests is Far From Over

Once again the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child has loudly and clearly insisted that the Vatican and Pope Francis remove all priest child abusers and report them to local law enforcement. The committee further insisted the Vatican open all associated records so that Bishops and other church officials who have contributed […]

The Healing Power of a Letter to the Editor

The Power of Bearing Witness Over the years, as I’ve come to grips with the things that happened to me as a child, I’ve learned to take my responsibility to tell the truth about the church and abuse very seriously. In religious circles it’s often called bearing witness. Though usually that term is reserved for […]

Looking Forward to the SNAP Annual Conference

On July 24th (2013) I head off to Washington, DC to attend the SNAP Annual Conference. SNAP, the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests founded in 1988, is the oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. SNAP’s mission is to protect the vulnerable, heal the wounded and expose the truth. As a area rep of SNAP for Seattle/Washington, […]

Hello! I’m Mary Dispenza

I, Mary Dispenza, want to fix the systems that break people I was once a broken person. Now, through this blog, I look at broken systems and ideas for making them whole again. This blog is about finding ways to help broken people, ideas for overcoming personal breakage and how to live unabashed. As an […]