Three Former Waseca County Priests on Winona Diocese List of Accused Abusers
By Christen Furlong
Waseca County News
December 16, 2013
UPDATE: The name of a former priest, Jack L. Krough, who served in Waseca County from 1990-96 has been added to this story.
The Roman Catholic Diocese of Winona on Monday named 14 priests credibly accused of sexually abusing minors. Three of those priests served in Waseca County at some point in their careers.
The list was filed in Ramsey County District by the diocese, only a day before a deadline set by a judge. The three priests who served in Waseca County were Sylvester Brown, Ferdinand Kaiser and Jack Krough, the two former are now deceased.
The list includes priests who the diocese considers to be credibly accused. Joel Hennessy, spokesman and communication director for the Winona Diocese, said that Bishop John Quinn hoped that releasing the list demonstrates “the sincere apology of the diocese, and the desire to heal and begin moving forward.”
Its the latest disclosure in a wave of ongoing legal pressure on Minnesota Catholic bishops after keeping names of alleged abusers a secret for several decades. The list comes less than two weeks after the release of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis’s disclosure of 34 priests’ names accused of abuse under the same judicial order.
One priest, the Rev. Thomas Adamson, appears on the Winona and Twin Cities lists because he served in both dioceses.
The three priests who served in Waseca County — Sylvester Brown, Ferdinand Kaiser and Jack Krough — served in Janesville, New Richland, and Waldorf areas. Brown, who served in Janesville for almost 20 years and also Waldorf, died three years ago. Kaiser served in New Richland for only five years and passed away more than 40 years ago. Krough is still alive, but had his ministerial privileges stripped from him in June of 2002 indefinitely. His defrocking is currently pending in Tribunal.
Sylvester Brown was ordained on May 31, 1956. His first assignment was at St. Mary School in Owatonna. He remained in Owatonna for seven years before moving on to Winona and finally ended his career in Janesville, serving at St. Ann Church from 1989 to 2007 and St. Joseph in Waldorf in 2007. Brown passed away in 2010.
Ferdinand Kaiser was born in Freedom, Minn., in 1910 and died in 1973, only a few years after voluntarily resigning from the ministry in 1968. He was ordained in June of 1937 and spent more than 10 years at All Saints Church in New Richland.
Jack Krough was born Aug. 11, 1949. He was ordained in 1976 and spent his first year in Austin before moving to Winona and then Rochester. He began a 7-year stretch in New Richland and Waldorf starting in 1990. His current address is Barron, Wisc.
According to Archbishop John Nienstedt of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, a handful of new victims have already come forward since the archdiocese released its list earlier this month. Nienstedt said that substantiated claims of abuse, from now on, will be disclosed on the archdiocese website. It is unknown if the Diocese of Winona plans to do the same.