DOUBT: Post-show Discussions

November 2021
« BACK TO DOUBT

Join the conversation! To give audiences the space to respond to Doubt, we’ve curated a series of post-show discussions following four performances of the show. Each discussion will be facilitated by a local guest who deals closely with issues addressed in the play, and moderated by our Assistant Artistic Director, Liam Lonegan. All discussions will be held in the Jason Robards Theatre following the end of that evening’s 7PM or 8PM performance.

All are welcome to join these free post-show talks — no ticket to the performance is necessary! Please arrive at the Playhouse approximately 90 minutes after curtain time; we will begin immediately after the show. Please note that ALL ATTENDEES will be required to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination and wear a mask while indoors at the Playhouse. View our complete COVID-19 protocols here.

meet our facilitators

Thursday, November 11, following 8PM show
Co-leader for CT chapter of SNAP (Survivors Network of those abused by Priests)

As co-leader of the Connecticut chapter of SNAP (Support Network of those Abused by Priests), Beth will discuss the organization as a whole and resources they offer to the community.

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Beth McCabe is a survivor of child sexual abuse by a priest beginning when she was 10 years old. She has been a member of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests (SNAP) since 2003, when the Connecticut chapter of SNAP was formed, and has served as a co-leader since 2004. Beth was also an advocate in New York as a member of New Yorkers Against Hidden Predators, who fought for over 10 years to pass the Child Victim Act that changed the Statute of Limitation (SOL) and created a “window” for victims to seek justice who were previously time-barred. She continues to fight for survivors in Connecticut to improve on SOL legislation so that all survivors regardless of age can seek the justice they deserve.

Friday, November 12, following 8PM show
Member of SNAP

Mark Fuller, activist and member of SNAP, will discuss long-term effects of childhood sexual abuse.

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Mark was born in a small village in Central New York. He was born and baptized into the Roman Catholic Church, attended Catholic schools for 16 years and served as an altar boy during his grade school years. His family kept the Catholic faith, observed saint’s feast days and holy days of obligation, and participated in the Sacraments.

Mark attended grade school (St. Francis de Sales), high school (Notre Dame High) and college (University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana). He started college in 1973 in a pre-med track with a goal of attending medical school, becoming an MD and working as a generalist in a small-town practice.

In 1974, during his sophomore year at Notre Dame, Mark was sexually abused by his counselor, Father William Presley. Father Bill was a Diocesan priest attending ND for Graduate studies in Psychology. It took approximately 25 years for Mark to discover that he had been abused (not uncommon for sexual abuse survivors).

His grades had originally indicated that an education in medicine was a possibility. However, after the “counseling” by Father Bill in his sophomore year, his grades slipped and he found he no longer wanted to go to classes. His GPA slipped. His friendships weakened and dissolved. He retracted and retreated (typical symptoms of sexual abuse). He now believes that he “died” in 1974. His will to live was gone. He now knows that what the priest had done as “therapy” was indeed, not therapy at all. It is called grooming and it is called rape and it is way more common than many are aware. The abuse destroyed his belief in God, man, and in himself. Self-esteem, self-confidence, ability to take risks and the urge to “try” were all decimated. He carried the shame and guilt for the abuse in secrecy for the next 25 years. The trajectory of his life had been severely compromised.

Upon graduating from the University of Notre Dame, Mark would work as a short order cook at a Howard Johnson’s, as a camp counselor, as a bartender and as a waiter. He would deliver motorhomes…essentially a truck driver. For the next 4 years, while doing these odd jobs, Mark would take classes at various colleges in an attempt to get better grades, take an MCAT, apply to a graduate school and continue on with his dream. He would get good grades but he would be unsuccessful with the dream.

Mark started as a lab medical technologist in 1981 and stayed with that profession in various organizations (including Beckman Coulter, a manufacturer of medical testing equipment; Stamford Hospital Lab; and a Yale medical oncology lab) until his retirement in July of 2021.

Mark has been participating with SNAP (Survivor’s Network of those Abused by Priests) for approximately 20 years and moderates a weekly SNAP men’s support group. He is dedicated to assisting, encouraging, and supporting survivors of clergy sexual abuse; educating people about the effects of sexual abuse; and to bringing truth forward about the harmful practices of the RC Church’s hierarchy and advocating for changes to, or elimination of, the Statutes of Limitation which prohibit survivors from seeking justice.

He would like people to know he is not anti-Catholic. He is anti-abuse and pro-living a full life with all the opportunities that can entail.

November 16, following 7PM performance
Editor, The Arts Paper

Lucy Gellman, editor for the New Haven-based Arts Paper, will discuss the process of reporting a story — from gathering accurate information, finding a strong lede, and ultimately uncovering the truth.

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Lucy Gellman (she/her) is the editor of the Arts Paper and host of “Arts Respond” on WNHH Community Radio. In 2018, she co-founded the Youth Arts Journalism Initiative, designed to teach New Haven Public Schools students the basics of grassroots journalism by placing them in the field. She believes that community building happens through joy- and justice-based storytelling and mentorship, and seeks to bring that to her work. Prior to her time at the Arts Paper, she was a general assignment reporter at the New Haven Independent, where she helped jumpstart its arts section, and station manager for WNHH. In a past life, she was a Fulbright Scholar and has worked as a fellow in prints and drawings at the Yale University Art Gallery, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and the Saint Louis Art Museum. She holds too many degrees in art history and thinks the Midwest, where she grew up, is the most underrated place on earth.

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November 19, following 8PM performance
Associate Minister of Children, Youth, and Families
Norfield Congregational Church

Pastor Thomas C. Burke, Jr., Associate Minister of Children, Youth, and Families for the Norfield Congregational Church in Weston, will discuss his own lived experience as a student in parochial school as well as the intersection between faith and doubt.

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With a play that naturally engenders such a strong audience response, we felt it was necessary to create a safe space for our community to dialogue after the performance. This group of guests, curated by Jenny Nelson, will help connect the play to issues of faith, truth, and doubt in our world today.

Liam Lonegan
Playhouse Assistant Artistic Director

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