Deceased Metro East Pastor Named in Clergy Abuse Scandal
December 19, 2018
A former Metro East pastor is being called out today as survivors demand the Springfield, Illinois Diocese release the names of more allegedly abusive priests.
The Survivors Network for Those Abused by Priests says Fr. Thomas G. Meyer, who was pastor at Sts. Peter and Paul Parish in Alton for eight years, was on the list of alleged abusers made public by the Minneapolis-St. Paul archdiocese last month, but was left off the list released by Springfield Bishop Thomas Paprocki. He also worked at St. Henry's Seminary, King's House of Retreats and St. Henry's Oblate Residence in the Belleville Diocese. Fr. Meyer has since passed.
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The group says Fr. Henry Willenborg, who is accused of sexually abusing a high school girl and impregnating an adult parishoner in Quincy, was also left off Paprocki's list. He also allegedly abandoned his son, who died of cancer at age 22.
In a press conference today, SNAP will demand Bishop Paprocki release and post on the diocesan website the names of all accused priests, reveal their whereabouts and reach out to victims, witnesses and whistleblowers. They'll also call for Illinois legislators to change the statute of limitations so priests who abused years ago, can still face punishment.