Bishop Kmiec appoints new victim assistance coordinator
8/4/2009 10:26:00 PM by Office of Communications
Bishop Edward U. Kmiec, bishop of Buffalo, has named Mary Ann C. Deibel-Braun, LCSW, of Snyder as the new assistance coordinator for the Diocese of Buffalo. Her main responsibility will be to coordinate assistance for the immediate pastoral care of persons who claim to have been sexually abused as minors by clergy or other church personnel.
“This is an extremely important position,” Bishop Kmiec said. “Individuals who feel they have been abused should contact Ms. Deibel-Braun who will maintain the strictest confidence. I am confident that she will provide the initial support that is vital in helping people begin the healing process.”
Deibel-Braun, a licensed clinical social worker, has been a supervisor of Catholic Charities offices on Buffalo’s West Side and in Lackawanna. She has served as a bilingual senior counselor for Lake Shore Behavioral Health in Buffalo; as a research associate and consultant to the State University of New York Department of Family Medicine Research and Development, and she has been an instructor at several area colleges and universities, including Niagara University and Buffalo State College.
She received a master’s degree in social work from the University at Buffalo and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Catholic University.
“I am here to help, and hope those in need will be comfortable taking the first step and make contact with me,” Deibel-Braun said. “The pain of past losses often deepens an emotional crisis of distrust and one feels abandoned and lost. It is my hope that together we can begin to trust the healing process and move forward.”
The diocese has a confidential hotline for individuals who wish to file a sexual abuse complaint. The telephone number to contact Deibel-Braun is 895-3010. Written complaints can be sent to Deibel-Braun at Catholic Charities, 412 Niagara St., Buffalo, NY 14201. Her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Deibel-Braun’s appointment was effective July 1. She succeeds Kathryn Marsh who was named the first assistance coordinator of the diocese in 2003. Marsh remains with Catholic Charities as program coordinator of visitation programs and mediation programs.