By Lori Burling
The Associated Press
LOUISVILLE - A national advocacy group for victims of sexual abuse by clergy will hold its annual conference this week in Kentucky, where the number of lawsuits alleging such abuse within the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Louisville continues to grow.
Susan Archibald, president of The Linkup, said the conference comes after a year that included more sexual abuse claims within the nation's churches than previous years.
"This conference, the `survivor pilgrimage,' will mark a new future for the survivors movement," Archibald said. "The goal of this conference is to help the victims, learning about things they can do not only to help themselves but to help the bigger problem."
The Linkup was established in 1991 to help victims of clergy sexual abuse cope with the emotional aftermath. As the number of cases grew, the support system became a national voice urging churches and religions to take responsibility for the abuse cases. The Louisville-based organization now has more than 3,000 members, according to its Web site.
"The number of people that have been victimized in Kentucky is tremendous," Archibald said. "The center of energy is in Kentucky now."
The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Louisville is facing 213 pending lawsuits that claim the church covered up the incidents.
Storm puts Tristate on ice
Meltdown with rain a concern
Tickets rare for driving in snow emergency
TOP LOCAL STORIES
County balks on putting Brennaman's refrain on ballpark
Ridge to debut 'Ready Campaign' here
N. Ky. considers new airport
Payers wary of new-tax ideas
Guide to Anderson
Meet newspaper staff tonight
PULFER: Students adopt a soldier
RADEL: Music lovers plan Kings Records tribute
AROUND THE TRISTATE
Expert: Adults need to stop bully
Academy gives taste of police work
Good News: Neighbors' award has an opening
Tristate A.M. Report
Obituary: Sally Crane wrote volunteer column
Obituary: Harold Dorn owned office supply store
Program's topic: race and schools
Four Warren school districts seek money
Recreation center's child care called pricey
Career center heads south
Ohio Moments: University at Athens goes back to beginning
Hearings to examine revised parole rules
Heather F. Henry says 'no' to run
Suspended profs' decision expected
Abused-by-clergy group convenes
Black history center will focus on Kentucky
60,000 left without power in Lexington
Accountants settle for $23M