I'm proud to count author, Mary Johnson among my peers, in particular for overcoming years of misguided religious rules and observances which failed to inspire deeper spirituality, unconditional love and respect for the gifts each one of us is created with.
From the age of five to sixteen, I was sexually abused by an uncle, physically tormented by an alcoholic father and raised in Catholicism. After graduating high school, I trained for the priesthood, but at the age of 21 a sexual predator priest from my religious community sexually assaulted me. After exposing this predator priest, the Catholic church’s denials, and ultimate betrayals, steered me far away from pursuing my life as a priest. My story is detailed in UnHoly Communion-Lessons Learned from Life among Pedophiles, Predators and Priests.
Today, just as Mary continues to do, I share my experience as a thriver after surviving physical, emotional and psychological assaults by a few Catholic officials and clergy administrators. Both Mary and I are committed to speaking our truths in order to inspire spiritual, emotional and psychological healing so that other casualties of religion may successfully move forward with welcoming love into their lives and embracing life’s fullest opportunities.
I’m honored to count Mary among my associates! Anyone who has courageously spoken their truth, as Mary and I have, understands how confronting disclosure fears, humiliation or negative consequences are quickly replaced with unmistakable healing.
Hank Estrada is the author of UnHoly Communion-Lessons Learned From Life Among Pedophiles, Predators, and Priests, a powerful memoir of overcoming incest as a boy and while in college, the assaults by a sexual predator priest. In 1986, Hank founded the first national non-profit organization to support male survivor healing. He is a respected author, recognized as an exceptional spokesman, and pioneer leader, whose courageous story inspires hope for many worldwide. www.hankestrada.com