Bishop Accountability
 
 

DIOCESE OF NEW ULM MN

Accused Priests: 12
Total Priests: 305
Alleged Victims: 25
Cost: $558,936 (of which $63,921 for therapy and counseling to victims, $4,261 for therapy for clerics who abused minors, $61,254 in legal costs, and $429,500 in settlements)
Sources of Funds: For settlements, $303,000 was paid by insurers, and $126,500 was paid by the diocese.

See Cathy Lynn Grossman, Survey: More Clergy Abuse Cases Than Previously Thought (2/10/04) with AP table of data for 74 dioceses.

Bishop John C. Nienstedt issues statement
Regarding release of John Jay Study


News Release #363
February 27, 2004

http://www.dnu.org/news/022704news.html

New Ulm, MN - The John Jay Study covers the last fifty years regarding the scope, effects and causes of clerical sexual abuse. It was commissioned by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and conducted by an independent agent, the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City. Today’s release of these aggregate numbers of accusations, convictions, victims and settlements of the past fifty years are startling to read and no doubt will receive much public attention. Although the numbers of the John Jay study do not tell the whole story, they ought to be understood in a proper context of this present moment; the situation must be evaluated in religious, as well as sociological terms. Our diocese published the information we sent to John Jay in the November 2003 issue of The Prairie Catholic. Other dioceses have done the same.

We are fortunate that in 1990 the Diocese of New Ulm adopted policies to deal with incidences of clerical sexual abuse and, at that time, appointed an independent Review Board. The incidences since that time have been few. At the same time, we have worked very hard as a diocese during the past two years to update our policies, to establish programs for Safe Environments, to provide background checks, and to train victim assistance personnel to deal with any allegations regarding sexual misconduct on the part of priests of the Diocese. Never before had an institution undergone such a comprehensive audit addressing a problem of this kind.

As a baptized Catholic and ordained priest and bishop, I have felt embarrassment, anger, disgust and shame as a result of this scandal that has befallen today’s Church. The crisis of clergy sexual abuse is an evil that has risen up before the world and it must be exorcised. The religious cause for the crisis is human infidelity to God’s revealed plan and, therefore, the solution lies in a thorough spiritual purification. Fasting, prayer and penance are the only tools for such a process to be achieved. Even though it may cause us to suffer humiliation or be drained of our resources, it is essential that the Church help society to overcome this evil wherever it exists.

This moment in the Church’s history calls for both compassion and understanding. It is indeed a time of testing: Can we love, forgive and reach out to others in a new way? Can we show compassion to both victim and perpetrator? Can we forgive Church leaders who made mistakes? Can we spend our money on paying for someone else’s sin? We must remember that the ethical teaching of Jesus is to love not just those who love us, but to love those who have offended us or made life difficult for us. Can we then love as Jesus has taught us to love? It is only in the power of Jesus’ love that the present moment can be healed and that Catholics can be helped to live out the potential of our baptismal call.



Special Report
Updated Sexual Misconduct Policy for the Diocese of New Ulm seeks a safe and secure environment for all its faithful

By Rev. Douglas L. Grams
Prairie Catholic
November 2003

http://www.dnu.org/admin/documents/updatedmisconduct.html

The Diocese of New Ulm has, over the years, taken many steps to respond effectively to the issue of sexual misconduct in the Church.

In 1990, the diocese developed a system of advocates for victims. Also in 1990, a Diocesan Sexual Misconduct Policy was published and all clergy received training about sexual misconduct and boundary issues.

In 1994, a revised version of the policy was issued. Officials of the diocese have attended regional meetings of Catholic

dioceses to discuss how the Church can better respond to sexual misconduct. On May 1, 2003, an updated Sexual Misconduct Policy was issued which is in compliance with the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People,

National Audit

In September, two members of The Gavin Group, Inc. auditing firm assessed how the Diocese of New Ulm is implementing the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, adopted by the United States Catholic Bishops in June 2002. The Diocese of New Ulm was found to be in compliance with each of the Articles set forth in the Charter.

Audits of all 205 archdioceses and dioceses in the United States were scheduled to be completed by the end of October. The final summary report from the audits will be submitted to the Office for Child and Youth Protection, headed by Kathleen McChesney, Director of the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops Office of Child and Youth Protection.

John Jay Study

Flowing from Article Nine of the Charter, the Bishops agreed to carefully assess the problem of sexual misconduct on the part of clergy.

Each diocese in the United States took part in an independent national study - the John Jay Study - in order to evaluate the size and the scope of the problem in U.S. dioceses.

The Diocese of New Ulm reported that:

- Since 1957, the year the diocese was formed, to the present, 305 priests have served in the diocese.

- During that time there have been twenty-five allegations of sexual abuse of minors involving twelve priests of the Diocese of New Ulm.

It is expected that a full report from the John Jay Study will be released by the end of December.

Financial Costs

The following summary sets forth the financial costs associated with clerical sexual abuse of minors in the Diocese of New Ulm since 1990.

- The diocese has paid $63,921 for therapy and counseling to victims of sexual misconduct when they were minors.

- The diocese has paid $4,261 for therapy for clerics who abused minors. (This amount is low because all of the alleged perpetrators are deceased or no longer serving as priests.)

- To date, the diocese has paid $61,254 in legal costs.

- The diocese has paid $429,500 in settlements to victims between 1992-1998. Insurers of the diocese have covered $303,000 of those settlements. The remaining $126,500 was paid by the diocese.

Background Checks

Flowing from Article 13 of the Charter, all of the priests, deacons and pastoral administrators who are serving in parishes in the Diocese of New Ulm submitted their names for criminal background checks and those results do not indicate any criminal behavior.

The Diocese of New Ulm continues to take steps to ensure that our children and young people are protected. Visit the diocesan web site www.dnu.org for further information about diocesan efforts to promote safe, healthy communities of faith; to effectively prevent misconduct; and to respond fairly and compassionately to those harmed by clerical sexual misconduct.

Rev. Douglas L Grams is the Bishop's Delegate in Matters Pertaining to Clergy Sexual Misconduct.

**If you or someone you know has been sexually exploited by a member of the clergy and you need to talk with someone about abuse, exploitation, or harassment, please contact the Diocese of New Ulm Victim Assistance Coordinator, or the Bishop's Delegate in Matters Pertaining to Sexual Misconduct by Clergy, 1400 6th Street North,

New Ulm, MN 56073; phone: (507) 359-2966.

Diocese of New Ulm reports statistics and financial costs pertaining to clerical sexual abuse of minors.

http://www.dnu.org/admin/statisticsandcosts.html

The Diocese of New Ulm has, over the years, taken many steps to respond effectively to the issue of sexual misconduct in the Church. In September, 2003, the Diocese of New Ulm participated in a national audit conducted by an auditing firm, The Gavin Group, Inc. to assess how the diocese had implemented the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, adopted by the United States Catholic Bishops in June 2002. The Diocese of New Ulm was found to be in compliance with each of the Articles set forth in the Charter.

The diocese also participated in The John Jay Study, which was conducted to carefully assess the problem of sexual misconduct on the part of clergy. This study was carried out in order to evaluate the size and the scope of the problem in U.S. dioceses.

The Diocese of New Ulm reported that since 1957, the year the diocese was formed, to the present, 305 priests have served in the diocese. During that time there have been 25 allegations of sexual abuse of minors involving 12 priests of the Diocese of New Ulm.

Financial Costs

The following summary sets forth the financial costs associated with clerical sexual abuse of minors in the Diocese of New Ulm since 1990.

- The diocese has paid $63,921 for therapy and counseling to victims of sexual misconduct when they were minors.

- The diocese has paid $4,261 for therapy for clerics who abused minors. (This amount is low because all of the alleged perpetrators are deceased or no longer serving as priests.)

- To date, the diocese has paid $61,254 in legal costs.

- The diocese has paid $429,500 in settlements to victims from 1992 -1998. Insurers of the diocese have covered $303,000 of those settlements. The remaining $126,500 was paid by the diocese.


**If you or someone you know has been sexually exploited by a member of the clergy and you need to talk with someone about abuse, exploitation, or harassment, please contact the Diocese of New Ulm Victim Assistance Coordinator, or the Bishop's Delegate in Matters Pertaining to Sexual Misconduct by Clergy, 1400 6th Street North,

New Ulm, MN 56073; phone: (507) 359-2966.

 

 

 
 

Any original material on these pages is copyright © BishopAccountability.org 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.
     
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