Spirit Fire Survivor Books

Teresa’s publications include books, articles, webinars, retreat outlines, and workshop notes. Almost everything on this page is free to use, with attribution as show in our simple terms for reuse.


Restoring Sanctuary (Indianapolis IN: Dog Ear, 2009).

A chronicle of unusual helpers along an unlikely path back to the faith, written by a Catholic survivor of clergy abuse. 

Veronica’s Veil: Spiritual Companionship for Adult Survivors of Child Abuse, with Rev. Lewis S. Fiorelli, OSFS. (Indianapolis IN: Dog Ear, 2015). Nihil Obstat, Imprimatur.

A comprehensive resource for developing and progressing in a spiritually healing dialogue between adult survivors of abuse and spiritual guides or supporters. The first two-thirds of the book covers the 75 most common topics in abuse recovery from a Christian perspective, with the final one-third focused on Catholic-specific themes. This book can be customized/abridged for your ministry program.


The Healing Voices Magazine

An e-zine founded by Catholic survivors of child abuse by clergy to bring together voices of all who have suffered from a tragic event that has left hearts broken and faith shaken. By joining together, these voices promote awareness, healing and reconciliation in the Church and all of society.

For Victim Assistance Coordinators and Survivor Ministers (compilation)

Selections from the co-founders and other contributions in The Healing Voices Magazine, compiled with special new material for those who seek to help survivors of abuse by clergy or others in authority in the Catholic Church. PDF version is available upon request.

Teresa’s “VAC” Pac for Victim Assistance Coordinators 

Additional information about trauma-informed pastoral care following a USCCB presentation


The Little Grotto

An online little grotto set in a soothing cove in cyberspace, where visitors may light candles, share prayers and e-greetings with others, all for free. Why curse the darkness, when you can light a candle and share a prayer? Prayer warriors pray for all intentions and visitors daily. New prayers and feast-day e-greetings are added every few months.

Virtual Prayer Service for Survivors of Abuse and Those Whom We Love

A virtual prayer service, including a Litany of Love, in response to Pope Francis’s call for a Day of Prayer for survivors of abuse. Leaders were Catholic survivors of abuse by clergy and others with authority from all over the North America. September 29, 2017.

Holy Spirit Prayer for Survivors of Clergy Abuse — and Those We Love

Canticle to the Holy Spirit, for Adult Survivors of Abuse by Clergy, and Those Whom We Love, to pray together. Originally published by USCCB, March 27, 2013.

A Survivor’s Prayer Service 

A prayer service for survivors and loved ones. Originally prayed at the Dominican Retreat House, Vienna, Virginia, April 20, 2014.


What Survivors Can Teach Us (Part 1, Part 2). YouTube: TeresaGreen, March 27, 2014. Video 17:18.

Dr. Robert Orsi, professor of Religious Studies and History and Grace Craddock Nagle Chair in Catholic Studies at Northwestern University. shares an advance look into his extensive research about the faith or spiritual lives of adult survivors of abuse by Catholic clergy or others with authority in the Catholic Church.

Basic Concepts for Integrating Faith with Recovery from Child Sexual Abuse. Ibid., July 1, 2014. Video 27:07.

An introduction to creative ways to integrate the Catholic and Christian faith into an adult’s recovery from child abuse. This webinar is a summary of the full series noted below.

Catholic Amends: 5 Things 2 Know, Ibid. June 19, 2014. Video 6:13

An animated presentation specifically for uninformed Catholics about the status of reforms following the child sexual abuse scandal in the United States Catholic Church.

Offering Spiritual Companionship to Adult Survivors of Child Abuse. Ibid. Video 11:44.

A ten-part webinar for anyone who is ministering to adult survivors of child abuse in a Catholic or other Christian dialogue. The next nine webinars are part of this overall program. Learn in the privacy and comfort of you own home, on your own schedule.

2Impact: Lasting Impact of Child Sexual Abuse on Adults. Ibid. Video 17:23.

3 – First Encounters: Early Dialogue with Adult Survivors. Ibid. Video 16:27.

4 – Spiritual Hospitality and Emotions in Early Dialogue. Ibid.  Video 11:46.

5 – Goals for Integrating Faith with Recovery. Ibid. Video 13:13.

6 – Preparing Yourself for Offering Spiritual Support. Ibid. Video 18:20.

7 – A Safe Setting for Spiritual Dialogue. Ibid. Video 25:39.

8Responding: Effective Responses in Ministry. Ibid. Video 25:40.

9 – Boundaries in Healing. Ibid. Video 25:13.

10 – Your Best Role in Spiritually Supporting Survivors. Ibid. Video 24:50.

Workshops, Retreats, Seminars

Wounded Healers:  Christ-Centered Healing & Hope After Child Sexual Abuse

Prayerful day of reflecting on the role of storytelling, Scripture and Catholic traditions in a trauma-informed Christian witness and ministry. For a mixed audience, including survivors, family members, priests, sisters and other ordained and lay Catholic ministers.

Introduction to Pastoral Care for Survivors of Abuse in Faith-Based Settings

Presented through the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Secretariat for Child and Youth Protection for the benefit of  professionals committed to implementing Article 1 of the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, a review of the critical importance of trauma-informed ministry.

Imaging a New Future with Grace

Presentation on hope for healing provided for victims’ mentors serving the Northern Virginia Human Trafficking Task Force, Fairfax, VA, March 2016. No document available.

Effective Pastoral Care for Adult Victims of Child Sexual Abuse

Presentation for St. Luke’s Teaching Institute Child Protection Seminar, online/webinar, December 2014 (see St. Luke’s Institute Education). Video and coursework available as part of a series via St. Luke’s Institute. 

Survivors and Mercy

Retreat offered during the Year of Mercy by Rev. Lewis S. Fiorelli, OSFS, and Teresa Hartnett for survivors, family members and support persons with mix of reflections, guided mediation, prayer and group discussions leading to a basket of prayers and intentions included during the closing service, Arlington, VA, October 2015. Partial transcript only.

Dark Times and Spiritual Guides

Workshop with Rev. Lewis S. Fiorelli, OSFS, for priests and sisters including two additional survivor testimonies on first interactions with the Church (the good and the difficult), Arlington, VA, October 22, 2014. Transcript.

Homecoming: Our Stories

Retreat offered by Rev. Lewis S. Fiorelli, OSFS, and Teresa Hartnett for survivors and support persons in which numerous survivors of clergy abuse offered reflections or prayers about the challenges and joy of coming home, Arlington, VA, September 6, 2014. Transcript.

Choices in Healing: Spiritual Journeys After Sexual Abuse

Retreat offered by Rev. Lewis S. Fiorelli, OSFS, and Teresa Hartnett for survivors and family members covering the difficult question “why,” issues of safety, emotional boulders and simplifying life; Arlington, VA, September 2013. Transcript.

Spiritual Direction for Sexual Abuse Survivors: Choices in Healing

Workshop offered by Rev. Lewis S. Fiorelli, OSFS and Teresa Hartnett for priests and sisters preparing to offer spiritual guidance to survivors of clergy abuse and family members, Arlington, VA, November 2013. No transcript at this time.

Clergy Sexual Abuse: Surviving and Thriving

Presentation and broadcast for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Annual National Conference, Secretariat for the Protection of Children and Young People, Washington, DC, September 2012. Power Point presentation.

The Baseline of Relationships and Ascendancy of Imagination in Online Conflict Resolution

Exploring the link between creativity and reknitting relationships in a virtual presentation for Creighton Law School’s Annual Alternative Dispute Resolution Conference, Cyberweek: Online, ADRHub.com, July 2015. Video 1:16:00.

Publishing in a Digital Age

Regular presentation to authors and staff, webinar, August 2009, August 2010, August 2011, August 2012, August 2013, January 2015. Topics can be incorporated in some ministries which rely on digital products or outreach. Video not available.

Virtual Work Best Practices

Regular presentation to staff and client teams: webinar, May 2012, October 2012, March 2013, August 2013. Important concepts for ministries incorporating technologies when interacting with survivors, family members or others. Video not available.


When Someone You Love is Sexually Abused

For every survivor of abuse or trauma, there is a network of people who feel the impact by one or more degree of separation. What is some of the thinking in current literature and practice that can begin to offer insights into the hardly noticed burden of those in relation to survivors?  (First published in Orthodoxy in Dialogue, March 15, 2018 – Republished in The Healing Voices Magazine, Mar 29, 2018)

Vicarious Trauma, Secondary Victims

What is vicarious trauma? How does its effects vary among health-care professionals, emergency response experts and those who love survivors of child abuse? What are reflections drawn from our faith for a trauma-informed ministry caring for secondary victims of trauma and abuse? (Published in The Healing Voices Magazine 3, Mar 5, 2018)

Making Distinctions after the Trauma of Child Sexual Abuse

We unlearn what abusers teach, using lies to groom us and authority to confuse us enough to believe the lies. We learn that all surrender is not annihilation and that, unlike the abuser who manipulates and destroys free choice, the Lord will permit us to choose whether to take the next step in healing over and over and over again. (First published in Orthodoxy in Dialogue, Feb 4, 2018)

Many Wounds, One Savior

The Church bears the wounds of all survivors of abuse within the Church–not only in moral terms, of course, but in a way that, also, deserves awareness, attention and care. This is yet another way that faith stories, shared among us, become testimonies as a community to the Lord’s favor and grace–and how the Good News is needed by all. (First published in Orthodoxy in Dialogue, Jan 17, 2018 – Republished in The Healing Voices Magazine, Jan 24, 2018)

Fellow Travelers

The Epiphany is a source of grace and understanding for Christians, particularly Catholics, who don’t know how to support adult survivors of child abuse by clergy and others in authority. Here are three reasons why traveling together spiritually is hard – and three reflections to make mutual support easier. (Published in The Healing Voices Magazine 3, Jan 7, 2018)

Our Beginning

Hinting at distinctions between therapeutic recovery with and without a strong faith element, a reflection on T.S. Eliot’s poem, Little Gidding, considers two ways to look at returning to one’s beginning–one earth-bound without faith, one in the context of eternity. (The Healing Voices Magazine 2, no 6, Oct 2017)

Strength-Based Leaders: An Affirming and Successful Approach for Supporting Victims’ Recovery and New Life  

Introduction to the strength-based approach currently being used in the majority of human-trafficking victims’ programs and now gaining footing in treatment and care for all other victims of abuse or violence as children or adults. (First published in the Northern Virginia Human Trafficking Task Force newsletter, Aug 15, 2017)

Impossible Prayer

Survivors and family members grieving in the wake of child sexual abuse often don’t notice their bond with God. (Published in The Healing Voices Magazine 2, no 5, July 2017)

Round Table: Bishops Mass of Prayer and Penance, Ibid.

Survivors share reflections on the Mass of Prayer and Penance held in Indianapolis, Indiana 2017.

First Encounter: What Do Liberated Victims First Encounter in Victim Services?, The Northern Virginia Human Trafficking Task Force Newsletter (June 15, 2017).

Scenarios for how freed victims of human trafficking in Northern Virginia are processed with compassion, including interviews with two professionals on the front lines of care.

Rosary Beads, The Healing Voices Magazine 2, no 4 (May 2017).

An argument for keeping a rosary in your pocket, even if you don’t pray the rosary (yet).

Pinwheels, Ibid., no 2 (March 2017).

What do pinwheels, which are symbols of child protection and child-abuse prevention, have to do with child protection and child-abuse prevention? Don’t they seem oxymoronic?

The Way: Healing Retreat for Survivors of Abuse, Ibid.

A review of a three-day retreat program developed by the Archdiocese of Atlanta and offered by its Victim Assistance Coordinator for survivors from around the country. (Part of a series of critiques of the few retreat programs for survivors and family members.)

Round Table : The Resignation of Marie Collins, Ibid.

Co-founders and contributors to The Healing Voices Magazine respond to the resignation of Marie Collins.

Mutual Healing in Dialogue, Ibid.

We were wounded in relationships, and must heal in relationships, both sides of the dialogue — survivors and family members on one side, and the Church on the other. For this, we need each other.

Do’s and Don’ts in Survivor Ministry (infographic), Ibid., no 1 (February 2017).

A FAVORITE DOWNLOAD: My unique infographic for the do’s and don’ts when interacting with a survivor of abuse or trauma, or a person with mental illness or otherwise grappling with chronic illness, and their family members. 

Every Precious One, Ibid.

A review of the book Acts of Recovery: The Story of One Man’s Journey Toward Healing from Sexual Abuse by a Priest, by Michael D. Hoffman, which focuses on themes of resilience and involvement in Church as a wounded healer.

Soar Like Eagles, Ibid.

What was it like to make that first call to the Victim Assistance program in the Diocese of Arlington, Virginia? It wasn’t pretty.

Light in Darkness: On Challenge of Christmas and Grief, Ibid., no 7 (December 2016).

A different look at the idea, however cliche it may seem in the sometimes-despair of holidays, that in our darkness God is Light.

Lamp, Lightpost, Ladder, Ibid.

A review of the book Shrinking the Monster: Healing the Wounds of Our Abuse, by Norbert Krapf, with a focus on how this work chronicles the author’s journey remembering abuse while writing a book of poems–and how creativity is often a Spirit-infused way through the darkness.

Round Table : Fondest Childhood Memories at Christmas, Ibid.

Co-founders of The Healing Voices Magazine reflect on memories of Christmas that add range to difficult childhood memories, which are a constantly evolving mix and unique to each survivor.

Exercise Your Muscle Memory, Ibid., no 6 (November 2016).

A review of what muscle memory is and how it plays a pivotal role in successful therapy and recovery from child abuse of any kind – as well as trauma from violence and post-traumatic stress.

McGee the Dog : How a Homeless Dog Rescued Me from My Own Triggers, Ibid., no 5 (September 2016).

How caring for a feral dog in need was the most effective way to learn about how to manage my own trigger-memories.

Round Table: How We Have Remained Catholic, Ibid., no 4 (July 2016).

Co-founders of The Healing Voices Magazine share why and how they remained Catholic.

Faith in Primary Colors: Hard-Won Wisdom and Faith Insights, Ibid.

Struggles in recovery and with adult life in the aftermath of child abuse are greatly aided by Scripture, which encompasses the life-and-death choices many people of faith have no yet encountered.

Intervention for My Generation: Digital Work Opportunities, Facebook (May 2016).

Digital opportunities for survivors of abuse can be helpful, as flexible work schedules can ease some stress that often triggers difficult emotional states. This think piece speaks to employers and those who should embrace the digital age and its opportunities.

Changing Hearts: The Pontifical Commission for the Protection of MinorsThe Healing Voices Magazine 1, no 3 (May 2016).

Why the pace of change in a massive institution doesn’t constrain us from the call, as wounded healers., to offer healing and reconciliation here and now, in relationships with family, priests, sisters, deacons and all Catholics. 

Faith : Strong Footing for Rough Going, Ibid.

It’s a rough world out there, indeed, a Valley of Tears. Faith is what will get you through, even during darkest hours related to abuse.

Child Protection: First Step in Reconciliation, Ibid., no 2 (April 2016).

Survivors of clergy abuse need to know the Church is serious about protecting children and young people before being comfortable exploring a reconciled relationship is even possible. In that the Church in the United States has made big strides.

Round Table: Spotlight, the Film, Ibid., no 2 (March 2016).

Co-founders of The Healing Voices Magazine share reflections on the release of the movie Spotlight.

Open Letter to Victim Assistance Coordinators, sent November 2015.

A note of gratitude and encouragement in the season of Advent.

My Conversion StoryOur Sunday Visitor (March 2015).

In a series of stories about conversion, my story of returning to the faith was included.

Why Consider Returning to a Faith that Betrayed Us? Healing, Learning and Growing (Archdiocese of Chicago newsletter) 4, no 2 (November 2014).

A gentle suggestion why returning to Catholicism is important for survivors — and those whom they love, also known as a invitation to a mature faith rich because of, not despite, suffering.

BlessedCatholic Social Workers National Association newsletter (February 2014).

For social workers, a reflection about being able to integrate faith with recovery from abuse.

Good Friday for Survivors of Abuse, Posted on Arlington Diocese Victim Assistance Website in Spanish and English. April 31, 2012.

Making Distinctions, (adapted from first pub in) Healing, Learning and Growing (Archdiocese of Chicago newsletter) 1, no 4 (November 2011).

MOST REPRINTED ARTICLE: The process of healing from clergy abuse is a process of making distinctions where we had seen none; between surrender and annihilation, between priest and predator.

Homecoming, The Arlington Herald (approx. June 2010). Reprinted insidecatholic.com and catholicity.com.

What is the homecoming like? Why? How? After so much pain, abandonment and betrayal?

Survivor Reflection: Safe, Alone in a Chapel, Ibid. (approx. August 2009).

A reflection on the unexpected experience of feeling safe in a Catholic chapel during a retreat for survivors.

A Different Kind of Bishop, Ibid. (approx. 2008).

A brief snapshot of a bishop’s presence in a survivor’s early exploration of a deeper commitment to faith.

First Year: A Survivor in Arlington Diocese, Ibid. (approx. 2003-2004).

Interviews  Given

A Guide Through the Darkness, by Katie Scott. The Arlington Catholic Herald, July 30, 2014 (accessed 10/23/17). Arlington, Virginia.

Rev. Lewis S. Fiorelli, OSFS, co-author of Veronica’s Veil, interviewed about his work with survivors.

Faith Reclaimed: How Survivors of Clergy Abuse Return to the Church, by Katie Scott. Catholic Sentinel, August 29, 2017 (acc 10/23/17). Portland, Oregon.

Profile of several Catholic survivors of clergy abuse, featuring selected resources. 

So shall my word be that goes forth from my mouth; It shall not return to me empty, but shall do what pleases me, achieving the end for which I sent it.

Isaiah 55:11 NABRE