Diocese Reports Sexual Abuse Complaint against Former Priest

Springfield News-Leader
December 30, 2007

The Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau has announced that it received an accusation of sexual abuse of a minor which allegedly occurred 40 years ago.

In a news release, the diocese reported that the priest accused, Louis Wyrsch, was ordained in 1964, left priestly ministry in 1973 and later married. He was dispensed from the priesthood by the church in 1989 and died in 1997.

Wyrsch served as associate pastor at Sacred Heart parish in Poplar Bluff in 1965, moved to St. Peter's parish in Joplin in 1968, then went on leave from the diocese in 1969. In 1970, he was named chaplain at Southwest Missouri State College.

The release said that the allegation was assessed as credible by diocesan officials and the Diocesan Sexual Misconduct Review Board. The diocese is in contact with the complainant as part of its established procedures in such a matter.


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