Statement re: Settlement Agreement with Mr. Ronald Vasek

CROOKSTON (MN)
Diocese of Crookston

September 27, 2017

By Bishop Michael Hoeppner

[Note: See also the 9/28/17 statement, previously posted in Tracker, by the Anderson law firm, attaching Vasek’s 2015 letter.]

As you are probably aware, earlier this year, Mr. Ronald Vasek brought a lawsuit against me and the Diocese of Crookston. Mr. Vasek’s lawsuit claimed Monsignor Roger Grundhaus made a sexual advance toward him in 1971 when Mr. Vasek was about 16 years old. He alleges that I tried to keep this claim quiet after he and I visited about the alleged incident in 2011. Mr. Vasek and I have reached a settlement agreement regarding his claims against me. The agreement states that there is no admission of unlawful conduct or wrongdoing on my part. The settlement avoids costly attorney fees and a drawn out legal process. No diocesan funds were used to pay the settlement as the diocesan insurance provider covered the claims. The Diocese of Crookston has sought a dismissal of the remaining claims against it related to this matter and awaits a ruling.

I want to emphasize again that I did not pressure Mr. Vasek to remain quiet when we met in 2011 or when we met again in 2015. Mr. Vasek had indicated to me that he wanted the alleged incident to remain confidential. I attempted to abide by his wishes.

I was willing to ordain Mr. Vasek as a permanent deacon. He attended the final deacon formation weekend in late April, along with the other deacon candidates. Mr. Vasek chose not to be ordained for diaconal ministry. I respect his decision.

Looking back and knowing what I do now, I believe I would have handled my conversations with Mr. Vasek differently. However, please know that I did not pressure Mr. Vasek into making any decision with which he was not comfortable.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Stift Klosterneuburg: Folgen eines vertuschten sexuellen Übergriffs

VIENNA (AUSTRIA)
Profil

September 29, 2017

By Edith Meinhart

[Summary: Detailed summary of the Klosterneuburg case and the allegations of abuse at Klosterneuburg abbey.]

1993* missbrauchte ein Augustiner Chorherr im Stift Klosterneuburg einen minderjährigen Messdiener. Danach wurde er Priester und erneut zum Täter. Ein skandalöses Lehrstück von Vertuschung und falscher Fürsprache.

Eintretende erstarren, Besucher dämpfen ihre Stimmen, wenn der Abglanz von Macht und Glorie auf sie fällt. Im Stift Klosterneuburg herrscht der Prunk von Jahrhunderten. Der Babenberger Leopold, der Heilige, stiftete das geistliche Refugium auf einer Anhöhe vor den Toren Wiens. 1133 holte er die Augustiner Chorherren nach Klosterneuburg. Auch die Habsburger ließen das Kloster nicht darben. 1730 wollte Karl VI. es gar zum Escorial erheben. Neun prachtvolle Kuppeln und vier Höfe sahen seine Pläne für eine kaiserliche Residenz vor. Sie sollte Kloster und Herrschersitz in einem sein. Doch er starb, bevor das imposante Vorhaben umgesetzt war; seine Tochter Maria Theresia baute lieber Schönbrunn aus.

Wer von der Wiege Österreichs spricht, muss Wien und Klosterneuburg in einem Atemzug nennen. Das Stift der Augustiner Chorherren gilt als eines der reichsten auf europäischem Boden. Zinshäuser in Wien gehören dazu, Ländereien in Niederösterreich. Stolz raunen die älteren Chorherren den Jungen zu, dass man alle vier Höfe nach den Vorstellungen Karls VI. ohne einen Euro Kredit vollenden könnte. In der Schatzkammer ist der Österreichische Erzherzogshut zu besichtigen. Vor zwei Jahren bestellte der Orden mit dem bald 75-jährigen Bernhard Backovsky einen Probst auf Lebenszeit, der den Gestus mittelalterlicher Kirchenfürsten in die Jetztzeit mitgenommen hat.

Blicke hinter die Fassade sind unerwünscht. Das Leben der rund 50 Chorherren, die zwischen Touristen über das Areal huschen, bleibt diskret. Nun droht dem Kloster jedoch unliebsame Publizität. Seit Monaten rollt eine “Initiative gegen Gewalt und sexuellen Missbrauch an Kindern und Jugendlichen“ aus dem deutschen Montabaur die verstörende Biografie eines pädophil veranlagten Pfarrers auf. Das Stift und sein heutiger Probst spielen darin eine wesentliche und unrühmliche Rolle. Als M.** 2002 im Bistum Würzburg einem Elfjährigen in die Hose greift, wird in der deutschen Wochenzeitung “Die Zeit“ der Personalreferent für das Seelsorgepersonal mit den Worten zitiert: “So wie es mir scheint, war es das erste Mal.“ Das Bistum schickt den Mann in Therapie und zieht ihn von der Seelsorge ab.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Sexueller Missbrauch: Stift Klosterneuburg wehrt sich

VIENNA (AUSTRIA)
Heute

September 19, 2017

[Summary: Prior Bernhard Backovsky of the Klosterneuburg monastery is defending their handling of a 1993 (not 1991) allegation of sexual misconduct.]

Nach dem Bekanntwerden eines Falles von sexuellem Missbrauch aus dem Jahr 1991, wehrt sich das Stift Klosterneuburg gegen Vorwürfe, man habe den Vorfall vertuscht.

Ein minderjähriger Ministrant war im Jahr 1991 von einem Augustiner Chorherren des Stiftes Klosterneuburg sexuell missbraucht worden. Das deckte das Nachrichtenmagazin “profil” nun auf. Dass der Geistliche nach Bekanntwerden des Falles im Stift zwar suspendiert, aber anschließend dennoch über mehrere Jahre in einer Stifts-Wohnung in Wien untergebracht worden war und später auch noch in Rumänien zum Priester geweiht wurde, sorgte in den letzten Tagen für Wirbel. Der Vorwurf: Man habe den Fall vertuschen wollen. Jetzt wehrt sich Propst Bernhard Backovsky.

“Jeglicher Missbrauch nicht zu entschuldigen”

“Jeglicher Missbrauch, und erst recht der von Kindern oder Jugendlichen, ist nicht zu entschuldigen und gehört geahndet”, erklärt der Generalabt in einer Aussendung. Am 2. Oktober 1993 sei dem Stift der Fall zugetragen worden, bereits sechs Tage später – am 8. Oktober 1993 – sei der beschuldigte Chorherr suspendiert worden. “Unmittelbar danach wurde er aufgefordert, aus dem Orden auszutreten”, heißt es in der Aussendung.

Und weiter: “Bis zu seinem Austritt, der per Weisung aus Rom erfolgen muss, war das Stift jedoch kirchenrechtlich für seinen Unterhalt verpflichtet und entfernte ihn aus dem Stift in eine Wiener Wohnung. Diese Verantwortung endete mit seinem Austritt im Jahre 1994”.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Canadian police seek recalled Vatican envoy for child porn

VATICAN CITY
Associated Press

September 29,2017

Canadian police have issued an arrest warrant for the Vatican diplomat who was recalled from the United States in a child pornography investigation, accusing him of accessing porn over Christmas last year from a church.

Police in Windsor, Ontario, said Carlo Capella, a 50-year-old monsignor from Italy, allegedly uploaded the child porn to a social networking site while visiting a place of worship in Windsor between Dec. 24 and Dec. 27.

The Vatican recalled Capella, the No. 4 official in its Washington embassy, after the U.S. State Department notified it Aug. 21 of a “possible violation of laws relating to child pornography images” by one of its diplomats in Washington.

It never identified Capella by name and provided no details of the accusations, sparking criticism from U.S. church officials who have been under fire for decades of cover-ups of priestly sex abusers.

Windsor police provided the most information about the case in a statement Thursday announcing the arrest warrant, and the archdiocese of London, Ontario, confirmed it had assisted authorities in the investigation of “Msgr. Capella.”

In the statement, Windsor police accused Capella of accessing, possessing and distributing child pornography. It said authorities were alerted in February that someone in Windsor had allegedly uploaded child porn using a social networking site.

They obtained records of the internet service provider and determined the dates in question. It said it had issued a Canada-wide arrest warrant for Capella, though it noted that he had returned to Italy.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Child Molesters and Child Porn in the Vatican Diplomatic Corps

ST. PAUL (MN)
Patrick J. Wall Blog

September 29, 2017

You may have read recently about how the Holy See withdrew Monsignor Carlo Alberto Capella from the Nunciature in Washington D.C.

One thing Father Colman J. Barry OSB taught us over and over again: the past is prologue to the future.

So with the Capella case I put the thesis to the test: Is there evidence that fallen priests are assigned to the Holy See’s Diplomatic Corp with prior notice for offending against minor children?

Lo and behold, a simple Google search found Reverend Daniel R. Pater of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati.

Father Pater sexually abused a 14-year-old female in Dayton, Ohio on his first assignment after ordination in 1979.

Fr. Pater admitted to the conduct.

Most civilized countries call this child sexual abuse.

Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk then exercised the geographic solution by sending Fr. Pater out of the jurisdiction to Rome to the Holy See’s Diplomatic Corps.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

SNAP founder Barbara Blaine: Fountain of justice

TOLEDO (OH)
Toledo Blade

September 28, 2017

Barbara Blaine, the founder and former longtime president of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, died suddenly a few days ago while on vacation with her husband. Though she had not lived in Toledo for many years, she is one of the great heroes in the history of this city.

Ms. Blaine grew up in Toledo, and it was in a Toledo Catholic school that she was sexually assaulted as a grade school child — by a parish priest she trusted and admired. Years of private pleading with the bishop and other officials of the diocese of Toledo resulted only in broken promises and lies. She got no justice. Barbara Blaine made up her mind that she would devote all her energy, and the rest of her life, to justice. And that is what she did. She had a vocation — a religious one.

SNAP has not been without controversy. And it has sometimes, in its righteousness, painted with brush strokes too careless and too broad.

But, by setting up an international organization on clergy child abuse that has chapters throughout the world, Ms. Blaine and SNAP made it possible for a victim almost anywhere to tell his, or her, story, to get help, and to seek justice.

It has been said that the clergy sex abuse scandal in Boston, tenaciously exposed by fine journalists at the Boston Globe, and famously documented and lauded, could never have been uncovered without SNAP. For abuse victims simply would not have felt safe coming out of the shadows. They would not have felt, or been, supported — legally, psychologically, or emotionally — without SNAP.

And SNAP began as one lonely, wounded, angry woman’s voice.

Barbara Blaine’s was that rare life that left footprints. She knew truth was the fountain of justice.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Vatican diplomat wanted for child porn offences should be sent back to Canada: Lawyer

WINDSOR (ONTARIO, CANADA)
CBC News

Vatican diplomat wanted for child porn offences should be sent back to Canada: Lawyer
‘If Pope Francis has been nothing but a PR exercise this will prove it’

September 29, 2017

By Dan Taekema

A London, Ont. lawyer says it’s time for the Vatican to “put its money where its mouth is” and send Monsignor Carlo Capella back to Canada where he faces child pornography charges.

“If Pope Francis has been nothing but a PR exercise this will prove it,” said Robert Talach with Beckett Personal Injury Lawyers.

Reports in American media state Capella, a high-ranking Catholic priest, was recalled to the Vatican after rumours U.S. authorities were planning to charge him with possession of child pornography began to swirl earlier this month.

On Thursday, Windsor police issued a Canada-wide warrant alleging a 50-year-old man named Carlo Capella committed child pornography offences at an area church during the Christmas holidays.

He is wanted for accessing, possessing and distributing child pornography.

The Diocese of London has confirmed it assisted in an “investigation around suspicions involving Msgr. Capella’s possible violations of child pornography laws by using a computer address at a local Church,” according to spokesperson Nelson Couto.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Crookston diocese settles bishop coercion claim

ST. PAUL (MN)
Minnesota Public Radio

September 29, 2017

By Martin Moylan

A Minnesota man has settled his claim that Bishop Michael Hoeppner coerced him into retracting an allegation of clergy sexual abuse against a priest in the Crookston diocese.

Ron Vasek, of Tabor Township, Minn., said the abuse occurred in 1971. He said that in 2010, while he contemplated becoming a deacon in the diocese, he told the bishop he’d been abused by a priest. In his lawsuit, filed in Polk County District Court, Vasek claimed the bishop coerced him to sign a letter asserting that no abuse ever happened.

Vasek said Hoeppner warned him that refusing to sign would hurt his dream of becoming a church deacon and impair the career of his son, who was a diocese priest.

Attorney Mike Finnegan said Vasek got a copy of the letter and an undisclosed monetary settlement this week.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Coalition MPs warn PM against making priests break vows

SYDNEY (AUSTRALIA)
The Australian

September 30, 2017

By Greg Brown

Coalition MPs have warned Malcolm Turnbull against forcing Catholic priests to break the seal of confession in matters of child sex abuse as legal experts say the proposal is unlikely to have an impact on reducing rates of pedophilia.

With the government to consider recommendations from the royal commission into child sex abuse, the Prime Minister has been warned he could face a backbench protest if he adopted the proposal to make it a criminal offence for priests to hear a confession of child sex abuse and not report it to police.

Nationals MP George Christensen said he would cross the floor if the Turnbull government supported the commission’s recommendation to force priests to break canon law. Mr Christensen said it would contravene religious freedom and was unworkable.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Nine priests have died by suicide

BELFAST (NORTHERN IRELAND)
Irish News

Nine priests have died by suicide after false claims of abuse, says cleric who was also wrongly accused

September 29, 2017

By John Monaghan

Nine priests who were wrongly accused of abuse have died by suicide, a cleric who was the subject of false accusations has claimed.

Fr Tim Hazelwood, a priest in the parish priest of Killeagh in Co Cork, was falsely accused of the sexual abuse of a child in 2008.

An anonymous complaint was made about him to the Diocese of Cloyne and forwarded to the Health and Safety Executive and Gardaí.

Fr Hazelwood, who is in his 50s, took a civil case in the High Court in Dublin.

Last year his accuser admitted making up the complaint and made a donation to charity.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Ex parroco condannato per pedofilia evaso a bordo di un taxi

ROME (ITALY)
RomaToday

Ex parroco condannato per pedofilia evaso a bordo di un taxi
Stava scontando una pena di 14 anni e 2 mesi di reclusione: era accusato di aver commesso abusi sessuali su sette ragazzini

September 29, 2017

[Summary: Original article breaking the story of convicted priest Ruggero Conti, who had been serving a prison term of 14 years under house arrest, but had escaped while at a hospital receiving treatment. This article reviews some of the circumstances of his crimes and conviction. Ruggero has since been apprehended in Milan.]

By Mauro Cifelli

E’ evaso a bordo di un taxi dalla struttura sanitaria dei Castelli Romani dove era ospite a seguito all’aggravarsi di alcuni problemi di salute. A tornare al centro delle cronache cittadine e nazionali Don Ruggero Conti, ex parrocco della chiesa della Natività di Maria Santissima, nella zona di Selva Candida, condannato in appello per pedofilia nel maggio del 2013 a scontare una pena di 14 anni e 2 mesi. L’ex prelato è stato accusato di aver abusato di sette ragazzini che gli erano stati affidati sia nell’oratorio della chiesa che in alcuni campi estivi.

Evaso a bordo di un taxi

La fuga di Don Ruggero è avvenuta lo scorso 26 settembre, quando i responsabili della struttura sanitaria dove era ospite hanno allertato i carabinieri indicando loro la fuga dell’ex prelato, a quanto sembra a bordo di un taxi preso poco distante da dove era ricoverato. Condannato al regime degli arresti domiciliari, l’ex parroco della chiesa di Selva Candida stava espiando la propria pena nella sua abitazione nel viterbese, dalla quale aveva ottenuto il permesso, per motivi di salute, a trasferirsi temporaneamente nella struttura sanitaria dei Castelli Romani.

Don Ruggero Conti in fuga

Ottenuto il permesso dai giudici del capoluogo della Tuscia, il 63enne ha fatto perdere le proprie tracce prima che i carabinieri gli potessero notificare la revoca del provvedimento cautelare dei domiciliari, con il successivo trasferimento in una casa circondariale.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Police capture ex-priest who fled while serving sex abuse sentence

DENVER (CO)
Crux

September 30, 2017

An ex-Catholic priest serving a 14-year sentence for sexual abuse of seven minors in Rome, and who had been given permission to receive treatment for a health condition in a nearby clinic, surreptitiously left last week and hailed a taxi, escaping detection. On Thursday, police caught up to him in Milan’s San Raffaele hospital and placed him in custody. Now, he’ll have to serve the remaining 11 years behind bars.

Rome – A former priest in Italy sentenced to 14 years in prison in 2013 for sexual abuse of seven minors was captured by police in Milan late Thursday, three days after escaping from a clinic in the hills on the outskirts of Rome where he had been taken for treatment.

According to police reports, Ruggero Conti, 64, had been serving his term under conditions of house arrest, and had been given permission to move to the clinic in the castelli, the hills surrounding Lake Albano outside Rome that also contain the papal summer residence of Castelgandolfo, to be treated for an undisclosed health condition.

While there, police say, Conti surreptitiously left the clinic and hailed a taxi, escaping detection. On Thursday, police caught up to him in Milan’s San Raffaele hospital and placed him in custody. Now, reports suggest, Conti will have to serve the remaining 11 years of his sentence behind bars.

Ruggero originally was arrested in 2008, while still serving as a priest, at a time when he was organizing travel arrangements for local youth planning to take part in the World Youth Day to be held in Sydney, Australia. He was charged with sexually abusing seven minors in his care between 1998 and 2008, with the abuse taking place either at an oratory where he served or summer camps he helped to run.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Coercion Claim Against Crookston Bishop Hoeppner Settled – Letter Released as Part of Settlement

ST. PAUL (MN)
Jeff Anderson & Associates

September 28, 2017

[See also the letter.]

Ron Vasek settled his coercion claim against Crookston Bishop Michael Hoeppner this week. As part of the settlement, Vasek received a copy of the letter the Bishop coerced him into signing in 2015 retracting his statement that he had been abused by Msgr. Roger Grundhaus when he was 16 years old.

Vasek’s attorney, Jeff Anderson, said for Ron this case was about exposing the truth. “Ron suffered in silence and shame. He brought this lawsuit against the Bishop to reveal the truth: that the Bishop used his powers to conceal clergy abuse and protect priests instead of survivors,” said Anderson.

The attached letter, dated October 21, 2015, is written on Office of the Bishop letterhead and states:

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Minnesota man settles lawsuit alleging bishop blackmailed him over abuse claim

ST. PAUL (MN)
Associated Press/Pioneer Press

September 28, 2017

By Steve Karnowski

A Minnesota man who had wanted to become a Catholic deacon has settled his coercion claims against his bishop in exchange for an undisclosed sum of money and the release of a letter he alleged he was forced to sign.

Ronald Vasek, of Tabor, alleged in a lawsuit filed in May that Bishop Michael Hoeppner of the Diocese of Crookston in northwestern Minnesota blackmailed him into signing a letter in 2015 that essentially retracted his allegation that a popular priest from the diocese abused him during a trip to Ohio in 1971 when he was 16. Vasek claimed that Hoeppner threatened a few years earlier to block his path to becoming a deacon and to harm his son’s career in the priesthood if word ever got out.

Vasek went public in May, saying the threat to his son had kept him silent until he was called into a meeting with his bishop this past March and was told his pastor had withdrawn his support for his ordination as deacon.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Priest Accused of Porn: ‘It’s shocking’

BALTIMORE (MD)
Fox 45 News/WBFF

September 28, 2017

By Shelley Orman

Bel Air, Md. – Neighbors in Harford County are still reeling after shocking and disturbing child pornography charges are filed against a former priest.

Fernando Cristancho is charged with creating and possessing child porn.

Court documents detail how the former priest abused three different young boys.

“There was a whole bunch of Bel Air police over here. They were all around the house,” said neighbor Chris Kirby.

He and several others living on Hayden Way say 61-year-old Cristancho kept entirely to himself.

“I’ve never seen him out, and I’ve been here since April,” said Kirby.

He saw Cristancho’s arrest last week when police searched his house and took him into custody.

“It’s shocking because he is right next door and I didn’t know anything about this,” the neighbor said.

According to charging documents, investigators found pornographic pictures of children on Cristancho’s cell phone, a computer and on an SD card he kept locked up in a safe.

The images were of a 3-year-old boy and two 5-year-old boys.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Priest charged with abusing 15 girls threatened victims with wrath: ‘He thought he was God’

NEW YORK (NY)
Daily News

September 28, 2017

By Graham Rayman

The abusive Catholic priest accused of terrorizing at least 15 girls at a Queens school decades ago once threatened one of his victims into silence with the power of God.

In 1981, Father Adam Prochaski of the Holy Cross Parish in Maspeth allegedly lectured a group of students, including one of his victims, who was then 13, about a woman who was “saying bad things” about him.

“He thought he was God,” the now-49-year-old nurse living in Toronto told the Daily News.

“He said, ‘She died in a car accident, her body burned beyond recognition. God punished her for telling stories about Father Adam.’ When he told the story, he was looking right at me.”

She said Prochaski, now 75 and living in Queens, sexually abused her at least 60 times between the ages of 11 and 13 between 1979 and 1981 at the church and school. She requested that her name not be used.

He used his involvement in the choir and in the teen club and his general influence in the school to get close to her, she said.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Pedofilia, aberraciones y heridas por restañar

BUENOS AIRES (ARGENTINA)
La Nacion

[Summary: An editorial usefully summarizing recent clergy abuse cases in Argentina, in the context of global developments. The movie Spotlight is cited. Ultimately questions zero tolerance, but also criticizes the church for failing to screen men entering the seminary, failing to report priests who abuse, and transferring abusers. The church’s mercy should be offered especially to the survivors, but also to the abusers.]

Es necesario revisar los criterios de admisión en los seminarios y casas religiosas, así como todo el proceso de formación de los candidatos

Afortunadamente, los casos de pedofilia silenciados durante tanto tiempo en la Iglesia Católica son cada vez más denunciados a pesar de los años transcurridos en muchos de ellos. Constituyen una de las mayores vergüenzas para la milenaria institución religiosa y minan seriamente su credibilidad ante la opinión pública, pero una mirada renovada, junto a la debida atención jamás podremos hablar de resolución-, permitirá, aunque más no sea, restañar parcialmente dolorosas heridas y reducir las probabilidades de que estas aberraciones se repitan a futuro. El papa Francisco reiteró su determinación de aplicar el principio de tolerancia cero.

Las acusaciones se multiplican en muchos países, y el nuestro no es ajeno a este horror. Recientemente se difundieron casos que afectaron al colegio Cardenal Newman de Boulogne, que fundaron los Christian Brothers en la década de 1940, y al colegio parroquial San Francisco Javier, de Caseros, en la diócesis de San Martín. A ellos se suman los conocidos en 2013 del Colegio San Juan el Precursor, donde el abusador era un profesor laico. Hubo dos más, también en San Isidro, protagonizados por un sacerdote que recibió 14 años de prisión y otro que fue removido dentro del ámbito de la justicia eclesiástica. Y, más acá en el tiempo, la admisión del director general del colegio Champagnat, de Recoleta, Ángel Duples, de haber abusado de un ex alumno de otra escuela hace 38 años, además de otros dos casos ocurridos en ese mismo colegio para la misma época.

* * *

Sirve recordar las escenas del film Spotlight, que narra la investigación del diario The Boston Globe sobre casos de pedofilia en la arquidiócesis de Boston. El cardenal Bernard Francis Law se vio obligado a renunciar por haber ocultado los delitos de numerosos sacerdotes. Sobre el final de la trama se enumeran cinco casos de abuso en la Argentina, en las diócesis de Buenos Aires, Salta, Paraná, Quilmes y Morón. “Queda claro que dentro de la Iglesia hay demasiadas personas que están más preocupadas por la imagen de la institución que por la gravedad del acto”, reconoció la teóloga Lucetta Scaraffia en L’Osservatore Romano, el diario de la Santa Sede, al comentar el premio otorgado por Hollywood a la película. Lamentablemente, muchas veces se reitera la acción de priorizar la preservación de la imagen de la institución antes que denunciar e instar a que sean investigados los hechos para defender a tantas víctimas inocentes desprotegidas.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Bischof verdächtigt Ex-Pfarrer des Missbrauchs

SAARBRÜCKEN (GERMANY)
Saarbrücker Zeitung

[Summary: Bishop Ackermann of Trier is sending to the CDF the allegations against a Freisen pastor, after the preliminary investigation confirmed the allegations. The unnamed priest had been removed from ministry on 4/14/15 and then retired. The preliminary investigation began in 5/16.]

By Melanie Mai

Trier – Fast anderthalb Jahre liefen die Voruntersuchungen gegen den ehemaligen Freisener Pfarrer: Am Montagmorgen hat die Bischöfliche Pressestelle das Ergebnis bekannt gegeben: „Das Bistum Trier hat die kirchenrechtliche Voruntersuchung gegen den früheren Pfarrer von Freisen wegen des Verdachts auf sexuellen Missbrauch Minderjähriger abgeschlossen“, heißt es in der Presseerklärung. Der Verdacht gegen den heute im Ruhestand lebenden 63-jährigen Geistlichen habe sich in mehreren Fällen erhärtet. Der Trierer Bischof Stephan Ackermann hat den Untersuchungsbericht mit einem Votum auf Eröffnung eines kirchlichen Strafverfahrens dem Vatikan zugeleitet. Die dortige Glaubenskongregation soll nun über das weitere Vorgehen entscheiden.

* * *

Das Bistum Trier hatte den langjährigen Freisener Pastor zum 14. April 2015 von seinen Aufgaben entbunden. Anschließend ging der Pastor in den Ruhestand. Die Voruntersuchungen wurde im Mai 2016 eingeleitet. Bereits seit den ersten Vorwürfen ist die Gemeinde gespalten. Der Pfarrer lebt mittlerweile in einem Ort an der Mosel. Die Staatsanwaltschaft hat die Verfahren wegen Verjährung eingestellt. Nach Kirchenrecht ist der mutmaßliche sexuelle Missbrauch von Minderjährigen dagegen nicht verjährt.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Verdacht des sexuellen Missbrauchs gegen ehemaligen Freisener Pfarrer erhärtet

TRIER (GERMANY)
Diocese of Trier

September 25, 2017

[Summary: Bishop Stephan Ackermann of the German diocese of Trier, has referred to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith allegations of sexual abuse by a pastor in Freisen, after a preliminary investigation confirmed the allegations in several cases. The priest has not been publicly identified.]

Kirchenrechtliche Voruntersuchung abgeschlossen – Bischof informiert die Glaubenskongregation

Trier – Das Bistum Trier hat die kirchenrechtliche Voruntersuchung gegen den früheren Pfarrer von Freisen wegen des Verdachts auf sexuellen Missbrauchs Minderjähriger abgeschlossen. In der Voruntersuchung hat sich der Verdacht gegen den heute im Ruhestand lebenden Geistlichen in mehreren Fällen erhärtet.

Gemäß den kirchenrechtlichen Bestimmungen und den Leitlinien der Deutschen Bischofskonferenz (Nr. 34) hat Bischof Dr. Stephan Ackermann den Untersuchungsbericht mit einem Votum auf Eröffnung eines kirchlichen Strafverfahrens dem Vatikan zugeleitet. Die dortige Glaubenskongregation wird nun über das weitere Vorgehen entscheiden.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Parish Predator: Mum abused by her local priest as a child

LONDON (ENGLAND)
The Sun

Parish Predator: Mum abused by her local priest as a child is still haunted by his smell… and it’s ruined her relationships and career

September 27, 2017

Jo Woods, now 45, from Leeds, kept her abuse a secret until 2013 and only came forward after the Jimmy Saville abuse scandal broke – hoping that perhaps she might be believed at last

By Hayley Richardson and Ann Cusack

A mum who was abused as a child by her local parish priest has revealed how the smell of him still haunts her now, ruining her relationships and her career.

Jo Woods, now 45, from Leeds, was preyed on by Father Damien Webb, a Roman Catholic priest, between the ages of six and eight.

* * *

A spokesman for Ampleforth said: “In December 2014, representatives of Ampleforth Abbey were present at all masses in the parish of St Benedict’s, Garforth, in the Diocese of Leeds, where they told parishioners that a woman had come forward regarding allegations of sexual abuse by a monk, Fr Damian Webb OSB, during the time he worked in the parish from 1973-1983.

“He died in 1990. Others were invited to come forward if they had experienced similar issues with independent support offered by a charity at the time.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Pope regrets decision he made about sexual abuse case

WELLINGTON (NEW ZEALAND)
CathNews

September 25th, 2017

Pope Francis has told the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors he has been learning “on the job” better ways to handle priests found guilty of abuse.

He admitted this during his first face-to-face discussion with the Commission on September 21.

The Pope said he has come to regret agreeing to a more lenient sanction against an Italian priest, rather than laicising him as the doctrinal team recommended.

Two years later the priest abused again. The pope said he has since learned “it’s a terrible sickness” that requires a different approach.

* * *

He said he has decided whoever has been proven guilty of abuse has no right to an appeal, and he will never grant a papal pardon.

The experts on the 15-member Commission have made some suggestions to Pope Francis: [list of nine recommendations]

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Canadian bishops won’t publish new policy on minor protection till 2018

DENVER (CO)
Crux

September 28, 2017

By Francois Gloutnay

[Note: See the Canadian bishops’ previous report, From Pain to Hope.

In June 1992, the Canadian bishops published a report entitled “From Pain to Hope,” entirely devoted to sexual assaults by the clergy. The bishops proposed “ways and means both to eliminate in the church the after-effects of past scandals and to prevent new cases of aggression against children.” The adoption by the Vatican of new standards for the protection of children made it necessary to revise the standards and policies of the bishops’ conference.

Cornwall, Canada – Canadian bishops will not publish their new policy for the protection of minors before 2018, said Bishop Anthony Mancini of Halifax-Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, chairman of the ad hoc committee tasked with drafting this resource in 2012.

“No, it will not be possible,” Mancini told his colleagues during a brief speech at the plenary assembly of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops Sept. 25. “I anticipate that the document will be finalized in 2018.”

The bishops first spoke of a publication before the end of 2016. Faced with delays, they then planned to make it public in the first months of 2017. In August, Bishop Douglas Crosby, president of the CCCB, suggested that the document could be published before the end of the year.

Mancini explained that the document has taken on such a scale that it needs to be made more comprehensive. He also said the bishops want to have the text analyzed by professionals before they release it. Fifteen lawyers, psychologists, psychiatrists and insurers were consulted. They “have something to say about the document,” and it would be better to hear the professionals “before rather than after” this report is actually published by the bishops’ conference, he said. “Their remarks are now coming to us.”

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Pope says not laicizing priest guilty of abuse was a mistake; it will never happen again

DENVER (CO)
Crux

September 21, 2017

By Carol Glatz

Pope Francis told the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors he has been learning “on the job” better ways to handle priests found guilty of abuse, and he recounted a decision he has now come to regret: That of agreeing to a more lenient sanction against an Italian priest, rather than laicizing him as the doctrinal team recommended. Two years later the priest abused again, and the pope said he has since learned “it’s a terrible sickness” that requires a different approach.

Rome – Pope Francis has endorsed an approach of “zero tolerance” toward all members of the church guilty of sexually abusing minors or vulnerable adults.

Having listened to abuse survivors and having made what he described as a mistake in approving a more lenient set of sanctions against an Italian priest abuser, the pope said he has decided whoever has been proven guilty of abuse has no right to an appeal, and he will never grant a papal pardon.

“Why? Simply because the person who does this (sexually abuses minors) is sick. It is a sickness,” he told his advisory commission on child protection during an audience at the Vatican Sept. 21. Members of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, including its president – Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley of Boston – were meeting in Rome Sept. 21-23 for their plenary assembly.

Setting aside his prepared text, the pope said he wanted to speak more informally to the members, who include lay and religious experts in the fields of psychology, sociology, theology and law in relation to abuse and protection.

The Catholic Church has been “late” in facing and, therefore, properly addressing the sin of sexual abuse by its members, the pope said, and the commission, which he established in 2014, has had to “swim against the tide” because of a lack of awareness or understanding of the seriousness of the problem.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Promises, promises: but little progress for papal commission on abuse

BOSTON (MA)
CatholicCulture.org

September 28, 2017

By Phil Lawler

A week has passed since Pope Francis promised to take “the firmest measures” to stop clerical abuse. Then again, you might say that a month has passed, or three years have passed, or maybe a bit longer, since the Pope said essentially the same thing. How many times does the same promise deserve a headline?

Last week the Pope was meeting for the first time with the special commission that he had set up three years ago to take action on sexual abuse. The commission has seen defections by frustrated members, who report that the group was disorganized, underfunded, and widely ignored by other Vatican offices and many national bishops’ conferences. Even now one commission member reports that “many local churches” have established guidelines for handling abuse; some still have not.

It would be an understatement to say that progress has been slow for the papal commission. In his address to the commission, Pope Francis admitted that he regrets having overruled a decision to remove an Italian priest who had been accused of abuse—and who, restored to ministry, promptly collected new complaints. The Holy Father said that he was “learning on the job” himself.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Class action lawsuit approved for alleged sexual abuse victims at Catholic institutions

MONTREAL (QUEBEC, CANADA)
CTV News/The Canadian Press

September 27, 2017

The Quebec Court of Appeal has authorized a new class action lawsuit against a major Roman Catholic organization for alleged sexual abuse committed by some of its members.

The decision overturns a 2015 Superior Court of Quebec ruling rejecting the class action request.

The Congregation of Holy Cross apologized and paid up to $18 million in 2013 to compensate victims for abuse that occurred at three Quebec institutions over a five-decade span dating back to the 1940s.

That agreement stemmed from an out-of-court mediated settlement, spurred by the threat of a class-action lawsuit.

Sebastien Richard, a spokesman for a victims’ rights group said the landmark settlement prompted about 40 new alleged victims to come forward.

Gilles Gareau, a lawyer representing the class actions said there could be hundreds more victims. He believes there could be up to 500 victims.

Because they are seeking between $50,000 and $150,000 in moral and punitive damages, the case could be worth as much as $50 to $75 million.

Richard said the current class-action names more institutions, including Montreal’s iconic Saint Joseph’s Oratory.

In a phone interview, Richard pointed out that the oratory is Canada’s largest church and reports directly to the Vatican, which could lead to embarrassment on the church’s part if the class-action is successful.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Diocese of Brooklyn Accused of Covering Up Ex-Priest’s Sexual Abuse

NEW YORK (NY)
The Gothamist

September 28, 2017

By Jake Offenhartz

[Includes photo of Official Catholic Directory sick-leave entry.]

More than a dozen women have come forward in recent weeks to accuse a former Queens-based Catholic priest of sexual abuse, and to allege that both Maspeth’s Holy Cross Church and the Diocese of Brooklyn worked to cover up decades of his predatory behavior.

According to attorney Mitchell Garabedian, fifteen women now say they were sexually abused by Father Adam Prochaski, who was assigned to the Holy Cross parish from 1969 to 1994. The alleged victims, now between the ages of 37 and 50, claim the abuse started when they were as young as 5 years old, and lasted well into their teenage years. Prochaski is believed to still be living in Queens.

For several years, authorities with Holy Cross were aware of the priest’s abusive behavior, but intentionally turned a deaf ear to the children’s complaints, according to Linda Porcaro, who served as a teacher at Holy Cross from 1986 to 1991.

“In 1991, about seven girls came to me, most of them Polish immigrants, to say Father Adam was sexually abusing them,” Porcaro tells Gothamist. “I went to then-principle Sister Benedict Jankowicz…She said, ‘Everybody knows about Father Adam, the whole parish knows about it.’ Then she laughed and didn’t do anything.”

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Alleged victims claim sexual abuse in lawsuit against province, church, priest

EDMONTON (ALBERTA, CANADA)
CBC News

Lawsuit alleges Anglican priest Gordon William Dominey sexually abused youth in his care in 1980s

September 26, 2017

[Includes links to earlier stories.]

By Andrea Ross

A B.C. man has filed a lawsuit against the Province of Alberta, the Anglican Diocese of Edmonton and Gordon William Dominey, alleging the priest repeatedly sexually abused him and at least nine other individuals while they were incarcerated at the Edmonton Youth Development Centre in the 1980s.

The plaintiff, whose name is protected by a publication ban, is seeking to have the lawsuit certified as a class action.

The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages on behalf of the plaintiff and other alleged victims, who were all aged 14 to 16 at the time of the alleged abuse, and were incarcerated at the EYDC between 1985 and 1989.

In February 2016, Dominey was charged with five counts of sexual assault and five counts of gross indecency in relation to the alleged assaults, which were reported to have happened at the facility. Dominey now faces more than 30 sexual assault and gross indecency charges, after more alleged victims came forward.

Dominey was a priest with the Anglican Diocese of Edmonton from 1980 to 1990. He was hired by the Province of Alberta to work with children at the EYDC from 1985 to 1989.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Man reaches settlement with Crookston Diocese

GRAND FORKS (ND)
WDAZ

September 27, 2017

By Kenneth Chase

[Note: See also the Diocese of Crookston’s statement, Vasek’s lawsuit, and the BishopAccountability.org database entry on Fr. Roger Grundhaus.]

Crookston MN – A local man claiming leadership at the Diocese of Crookston threatened and intimidated him into hiding his sexual abuse by a clergy member back in the 70s has reached a settlement with the Catholic organization.

A statement on the Diocese of Crookston’s website said that the church and Ron Vasek reached a settlement.

Vasek sued Bishop Michael Hoeppner for threatening and intimidating Vasek to keep quiet about sexual abuse that Vasek says happened to him as a teenager, at the hands of Roger Grundhaus, Vasek’s priest at the time.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

More than a dozen women accuse former Maspeth priest of abusing them as children

NEW YORK (NY)
Spectrum News NY1

September 27, 2017

[With video that includes comment from whistleblower Linda Porcaro, not included on the webpage text.]

More than a dozen women say a former Maspeth priest sexually assaulted them decades ago.

Boston attorney Mitchell Garabedian says at least 15 women have called his office claiming Father Adam Prochaski (aka Prochalski) at Holy Cross Church sexually abused them as teenagers. They say it happened between 1969 and 19 94. Because his clients are older than 23, Garabedian says they will not be able to charge the priest with sexual assault of a child, but they might be able to receive a settlement from the Brooklyn Diocese.

“He had free reign, again, in the church, in the school, in the homes, in the rectory,” said Garabedian.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Several priests in prison for child sex abuse still being paid by Louisville Catholic church

LOUISVILLE (KY)
WDRB News

September 27, 2017

By Gil Corsey

[Note: Includes video. See also the BishopAccountability.org database entries for Fr. R. Joseph Hemmerle and Fr. James R. Schook.]

They stand convicted of committing terrible sins, but pedophile priests are still being paid by the Catholic church in Louisville.

“I think it’s absurd,” Michael Norris said. “I just don’t understand it.”

Norris is one of Fr. Joseph Hemmerle’s victims, molested at age 11 at camp Tall Trees in Meade County in the 1970’s.

“This man is who I was thought is an extension of God,” Norris said. “That’s what the Catholic church taught me. And here’s God doing this to me. It really messes with your spirituality.”

* * *

Only the Pope can remove the status of a priest, but the process starts with the Archdiocese. Louisville Archbishop Joseph Kurtz declined WDRB News’ request for an on-camera interview on the subject.

Far more often than removing a priest for molestation, the Catholic church orders him to a lifetime of “prayer and penance.” That’s the case for Rev. James Schook, convicted in Louisville in 2014.

“Priests who are directed to lead a life of prayer and penance may not exercise ministry, say mass publicly, or administer the sacraments,” said Archdiocese of Louisville Spokeswoman Cecilia Price. “They may not wear clerical garb or present themselves as a priests.”

But they can sill collect a check from the church.

“Priests on prayer and penance receive medical insurance and a reduced salary if not retired or reduced retirement benefits,” Price said.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Statement from the Diocese of Crookston Regarding Additional Priest Name Disclosures

CROOKSTON (MN)
Diocese of Crookston

September 26, 2017

[Note: As of 9/28/17, the Diocese of Crookston had two lists of accused priests posted on its website; one list includes these “new” priests, and one list does not include them. Both lists delete a laicized priest, Fr. Gerald Foley, who had been added to the list on 10/23/14. Moreover, the diocese’s Reporting Abuse page links to the list that does not include Plakut and Strub, and has deleted Foley. See the BishopAccountability.org database entry for Fr. Gerald K. Foley.]

The Diocese of Crookston was notified last week that two religious order priests assigned within the Diocese in the 1940s and 1950s were added by St. John’s Abbey to its list of men “likely to have offended against minors”.

Casimir Plakut was ordained for the Order of St. Benedict in 1938. He died in 1988. Augustine John Strub was ordained for the Order of St. Benedict in 1947. He left the priesthood in the early 1960s and died in 2015.

The Diocese takes any allegation of abuse of a minor very seriously. Plakut and Strub have been added to the list of “priests who have been credibly accused of abuse of a minor” on the Diocese of Crookston’s website.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Statement re: Three Additional Names

COLLEGEVILLE (MN)
St. John’s Abbey

September 18, 2017

Saint John’s Abbey is adding the names of three former monks to its list of those likely to have offended against minors. All three former monks are deceased and all three had severed their relationship with Saint John’s Abbey well before their deaths.

Casimir Plakut became a monk in 1932 and was ordained in 1938. He worked at several parishes, including Duluth, Detroit Lakes, Cold Spring, and Naytahwaush, Minnesota. He began the process of leaving Saint John’s in 1958, and finalized his intentions in 1962. He died in 1988.

Augustine John Strub became a monk in 1939 and was ordained in 1947. He served in parishes in Cloquet, Naytahwaush, Callaway, and at St Mary’s Hospital, Duluth, Minnesota. He left Saint John’s and the priesthood in 1961-62. He died in 2015.

James Kelly became a monk in 1936 and was ordained in 1942. He taught and studied music at Saint John’s University and other colleges. He also served in various parishes in the Twin Cities and also at Ball Club, Minnesota. He left Saint John’s and the priesthood in 1973 and was formally dismissed from the priesthood in 1976. He died in 2011.

Saint John’s Abbey, in keeping with its policies and practices, intends to make public documents related to these individuals at a future date. However, those documents must first be redacted to remove the names and other identifying details to protect innocent parties mentioned in the documents.

This brings the number of current and former monks on Saint John’s list to twenty-one, thirteen of whom are deceased and two of whom have permanently left the order. The list and information about Saint John’s response to sexual abuse can be found at: http://www.saintjohnsabbey.org/info/safe-environment/.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

NYPD opens investigation into Catholic priest sex abuse claims

NEW YORK (NY)
Daily News

September 27, 2017

By Easha Ray and Graham Rayman

Prosecutors and the NYPD have opened an investigation into allegations that a Catholic priest sexually abused 15 victims decades ago at a parish school, officials said.

The Queens District Attorney’s office and the NYPD’s Special Victims squad are looking into the allegations made public Tuesday by the 15 women against former Rev. Adam Prochaski, who once worked at Holy Cross School in Maspeth, police officials said.

The alleged abuse took place from 1974 to 1993.

On Tuesday, a spokeswoman for the Diocese of Brooklyn-Queens said Prochaski abruptly left the priesthood in 1994 after the diocese received allegations against him.

However, the Official Catholic Directory — known as the Kenedy Directory — listed him as absent on sick leave from 1995 to 2000, and then absent on sick leave and absent on leave in 2001 and 2002.

He was no longer listed from 2003 on.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Former priest at Maspeth church accused of sexually abusing 15 women over 20 years

QUEENS (NY)
Queens Courier/QNS

September 27, 2017

By Anthony Giudice

More than a dozen women have recently come forward alleging that a former priest and pastor of a Maspeth church sexually abused them during a nearly 20-year time period.

As first reported in the Daily News, the 15 women claim that Father Adam Prochaski, who served Holy Cross Church between 1969 and 1994 and taught at the now-defunct parish school, sexually abused them between the years of 1973 and 1994.

They’re being represented by attorney Mitchell Garabedian, who represented sex abuse victims in Boston and was portrayed in the 2015 film “Spotlight” about the Boston Globe’s award-winning investigation into sexual abuse committed by clergymen.

Prochaski’s alleged victims were between the ages of 5 and 16 years old at the time of the alleged abuse, Garabedian told QNS in a conference call on Wednesday. It is further alleged that the sexual abuse took place inside the Holy Cross Church, in the rectory, in the school, in Prochaski’s car, and even inside the homes of some of the alleged victims.

“Where were the supervisors? Why weren’t they protecting the children?” Garabedian asked. “It is time for the Diocese of Brooklyn and Bishop [Nicholas] DiMarzio to step up to the plate and answer these questions.”

Linda Porcaro, a former teacher at Holy Cross who taught at the school from 1986 to 1991, was the first one at the school to take these allegations seriously after seven of Prochaski’s alleged victims alerted her to the abuse near the end of school year in 1990.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

4 new lawsuits: Priest took boys’ nude photos, groped them

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

September 28, 2017

By Haidee V Eugenio

[See BishopAccountability.org database entry on Fr. Louis Brouillard.]

Former priest Louis Brouillard took nude photos of boys, groped them, touched their private parts, and induced them to read adult magazines in exchange for food treats and merit badges, according to four lawsuits filed in local court on Wednesday and Thursday.

Brouillard is accused by plaintiffs identified in court documents only as R.C., L.P., M.M., and F.P., all represented by attorney Michael Berman.

The men, now in their early 50s, demand a combined total of $30 million in minimum damages.

They alleged that Brouillard sexually abused and molested them in the 1970s when they were minors and serving as altar boys and/or members of the Boy Scouts of America. They said Brouillard would walk around them naked.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Barbara Blaine, Founder of Abuse Victims Group SNAP, Dies

CHICAGO
NBC-TV Chicago

September 26, 2017

By Mary Ann Ahern

An abuse victim herself, she spoke out on behalf of the men and women who confided in her

Barbara Blaine, the founder of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, died unexpectedly Sunday at 61 years old.

The organization announced on its Facebook page that Blaine died Sunday following a recent cardiac event. She was surrounded by family and friends, the group wrote.

“Barbara was taken far too early, and we may never find rhyme or reason in the manner of her passing, but we can forever find inspiration and purpose through the manner in which she lived,” Blaine’s family wrote in a statement. “She was a truly remarkable human being, and her spirit will remain with us, shaping our choices for the better, erring us away from petty concerns and encouraging us to lean in towards compassion, that we might honor her memory.”

Blaine formed the SNAP group in 1988 with a meeting at a Chicago hotel. She had been abused as an 8th grader by a priest who taught at the Catholic school she attended, according to SNAP’s website.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Paedophile priest argued 28 years in jail was too much for a man of his age

ENGLAND
Gazette (Teesside)

September 26, 2017

Former Roman Catholic priest Roy Lovatt, from Redcar, tried to get sentence cut :: Top judges told him he deserved every day of the sentence

A twisted paedophile from Redcar who preyed on young boys at a residential school deserved every day of his 28-year jail term, top judges today ruled.

Former ordained Roman Catholic priest Roy Lovatt, 72, subjected two boys to a string of sexual attacks while working as a housemaster at Thorp Arch Grange, near Wetherby.

During the same period in the 1970s and 1980s, he abused four other young children, three boys and a girl, leaving them badly traumatised.

Lovatt, of Queen Street, Redcar, was convicted of or admitted dozens of sex offences and was jailed for 28 years at Leeds Crown Court in February.

On Tuesday, he appealed against the sentence, but was told by senior judges that the term was richly deserved for the catalogue of offending.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Fifteen women accuse ex-priest of sexually abusing them at Queens Catholic school over two decades

NEW YORK NY
New York Daily News

September 26, 2017

By Esha Ray and Graham Rayman

Fifteen women are claiming Tuesday they were sexually abused by a priest at a Catholic school in Queens over a span of two decades.

The women say they were abused by the Rev. Adam Prochaski at the Holy Cross school in Maspeth between 1973 and 1994, according to their lawyer Mitchell Garabedian and Robert Hoatson of the New Jersey-based Road to Recovery group, which helps victims of sexual abuse.

Garabedian was portrayed by Stanley Tucci in the movie “Spotlight” about the Boston Globe’s Pulitzer Prize-winning series on clergy sexual abuse.

Garabedian said the alleged victims were between the ages of 5 and 16 years old at the time of the abuse.

“The sexual abuse happened here at Holy Cross Church, in the church, in Holy Cross Rectory, in the Holy Cross school, in cars and in homes where Father Prochaski used to visit the children,” Garabedian said. “He would sexually abuse them in unimaginable ways according to the allegations.”

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Woman Claims Abuse Allegations Against Queens Priest Fell On Deaf Ears

NEW YORK NY
1010 WINS (CBS RADIO)

September 26, 2017

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Over a dozen women claim they were abused by a Queens priest over a span of two decades.

Linda Porcano said she never forgot the names of the girls who said they were sexually abused by Father Adam Prochaski in 1990, 1010 WINS’ Carol D’Auria reported.

She said she had reported the abuse to the principal at Holy Cross in Maspeth, but the principal laughed at her.

When she saw a Facebook post with attorney Michael Garabedian, she jumped at the chance to do right by her students.

So far, 15 have come forward.

“There are probably many, many more victims, because Father Adam was at Holy Cross for 25 years,” Garabedian said.

Porcano wants the priest prosecuted, and she wants the church to cooperate.

“They’re hiding it, and they should have reported to the police, and they never reported to the police,” Garabedian said.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

3 priests accused of abusing boys in ‘70s

GUAM
The Guam Daily Post

September 27, 2017

By Mindy Aguon

Priests accused of abusing boys in ’70s

Ten lawsuits filed in the Superior Court of Guam this month allege repeated sexual abuse on church grounds and at Boy Scout outings. One victim alleges he spent a summer off-island with a priest who raped and sexually abused him on many occasions.

Attorney Michael Berman, of Berman, O’Connor and Mann, filed the lawsuits on behalf of 10 clients against the Archdiocese of Agana and the Boy Scouts of America. The individual complaints separately named priests Louis Brouillard, Raymond Cepeda and Andrew Mannetta as the alleged abusers while they were assigned to parishes on Guam.

F.S.L. alleges the sexual abuse began when he was 12 and serving as an altar boy for the Tumon parish and a Boy Scout in the 1970s.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Former Harford priest accused of making child pornography

MARYLAND
The Baltimore Sun/ The Aegis

September 27, 2017

By Erika Butler

Former priest faces child porn charges

[See the entry for Cristancho in BishopAccountability.org’s database of accused U.S. clergy. See also the entry for Cristancho in the List of Accused Priests and Religious Brothers in the Baltimore Archdiocese as reformatted by BishopAccountability.org for easier viewing and printing.]

A Bel Air man, who years ago served as a priest at St. Ignatius Church in Hickory, has been charged with making and possessing pornographic photos involving young boys, according to court records.

Fernando Cristancho, 61, of the 800 block of Hayden Way, served as a priest from 1999 to 2002 at St. Ignatius Church in Hickory, according to a statement on the Archdiocese of Baltimore’s website, www.archbalt.org.

Members of the Harford County Child Advocacy Center, which investigates allegations of child abuse, executed a search and seizure warrant Sept. 19 at Cristancho’s home, according to charging documents.

Detectives found photos of young boys on Cristancho’s electronic devices, including his cell phone, a computer in the house and on a Secure Digital (SD) memory card in a safe, according to the charging documents.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Barbara Blaine, Who Championed Victims of Priests’ Abuse, Dies at 61

UNITED STATES
New York Times

By LAURIE GOODSTEIN
SEPT. 25, 2017

Barbara Blaine, who was sexually abused by a Roman Catholic priest as a teenager and went on to found the nation’s most potent advocacy group for abuse survivors, died on Sunday in St. George, Utah. She was 61.

The cause was a sudden tear in a blood vessel in her heart, which she sustained on Sept. 18 after going hiking on a vacation, her husband, Howard Rubin, said. She lived in Chicago.

Ms. Blaine, a lawyer with a degree in theology, served for nearly 30 years as president of the group she founded, the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, known as SNAP. She stepped down this year and had recently started a new international organization to hold the Vatican and church officials overseas accountable for covering up abuse cases.

Ms. Blaine was an ardent Catholic who spent her years after college serving and living with homeless people in a Catholic Worker house in Chicago, part of a social justice movement for the poor founded by the activist Dorothy Day. Ms. Blaine applied that same activist sensibility to creating a new movement to fight for abuse survivors.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

MEDIA RELEASE – SEPTEMBER 25, 2017

NEW YORK
Road to Recovery

Fourteen (14) women have come forward to allege that they were sexually abused as minor children by their parish priest and pastor, Fr. Adam Prochaski (a/k/a Prochalski) of Holy Cross Parish, Maspeth, Queens, in the Diocese of Brooklyn, New York. All of the women are represented by Attorney Mitchell Garabedian of Boston, MA – mgarabedian@garabedianlaw.com – who was featured in the movie, “Spotlight” and is working with a licensed New York attorney

Fr. Adam Prochaski (a/k/a Prochalski) was assigned to Holy Cross Parish, Maspeth, Queens, New York, for approximately twenty-five (25) years beginning in approximately 1969 and ending in 1994. He was pastor of the parish for approximately four (4) years

According to reports, Fr. Adam Prochaski (a/k/a Prochalski) left the priesthood in approximately 2003 after being absent on sick leave for approximately seven (7) years

WHAT
A press conference announcing that fourteen (14) courageous women who attended Holy Cross Parish and/or School, Maspeth, Queens, have alleged that Fr. Adam Prochaski (a/k/a Prochalski) sexually abused them as minor children in several locations over numerous years

WHEN
Tuesday, September 26, 2017 at 11:45 AM

WHERE
On the public sidewalk outside Holy Cross Roman Catholic Church, 61-21 56 Road, Maspeth, Queens, New York 11378

WHO
Attorney Mitchell Garabedian of Boston who represents the fourteen (14) women who allege that they were sexually abused as minor children by Fr. Adam Prochaski (a/k/a Prochalski); Linda Porcaro (“Mrs. G”), former teacher at Holy Cross School, Maspeth, Queens, who has courageously assisted many of her former students who allege that they were sexually abused by Fr. Adam Prochaski (a/k/a Prochalski); and, Dr. Robert M. Hoatson, Co-founder and President of Road to Recovery, Inc., a non-profit charity based in New Jersey that assists victims of sexual abuse and their families

WHY
According to reports, Fr. Adam Prochaski (a/k/a Prochalski) was assigned to Holy Cross Parish, Maspeth, Queens, New York, as a young priest of the Diocese of Brooklyn, New York. While at Holy Cross Parish, Fr. Adam Prochaski (a/k/a Prochalski) allegedly sexually abused many minor girls, some of them Polish immigrants or daughters of Polish immigrants. Fourteen (14) women who were minor children at Holy Cross Church and/or School have come forward to allege that Fr. Adam Prochaski (a/k/a Prochalski), known as “Fr. Adam,” sexually abused them in Holy Cross Church, Holy Cross School, Holy Cross parish rectory, private homes, and elsewhere.

CONTACT
Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D., Road to Recovery, Inc., 862-368-2800 – roberthoatson@gmail.com

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Nuns pledge to honour orphans buried in mass grave

SCOTLAND
Premier

Mon 25 Sep 2017
By Tola Mbakwe

Nuns who ran an orphanage where 400 children have been discovered in a secret mass grave have promised to honour the lives of the children.

According to Herald Scotland, the Daughters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul have pledged to build a memorial for the “lost children” of Smyllum Park.

Earlier this month, new research revealed 402 children died in the care of the nuns at Smyllum Park in Lanark between 1864 and when it closed its doors in 1981.

It had previously said that 158 children died and were buried in compartments at nearby St Mary’s Cemetery. Back in 2004 the nuns erected a headstone which didn’t have names engraved.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Archdiocese helped sexual abuser teach in Pierce County public school, suits allege

WASHINGTON
The News Tribune

BY ALEXIS KRELL
akrell@thenewstribune.com

A teacher who sexually abused students at Catholic schools across the country did the same at a Pierce County public school, where the church helped him get hired, two lawsuits allege.

The Seattle Archdiocese recently agreed to settle one of the suits for $1.3 million; the other is ongoing.

Both were brought by adults who say they were abused as children at Parkland Elementary School in the 1980s by teacher Edward Courtney. Both suits blame the archdiocese for Courtney being hired at the public school.

Courtney was part of the Christian Brothers religious order, and was on a list the archdiocese released last year of 77 other brothers, priests, deacons and nuns accused of abusing children.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Seattle Catholic Archdiocese Agrees To $1.3 Million Settlement In Sex Abuse Case

WASHINGTON
Northwest Public Radio

By KATE WALTER

The Seattle Catholic Archdiocese has agreed to a $1.3 million settlement with a man who says he was sexually abused at a school near Tacoma.

The man, known only in court documents as M.R., says he was abused by a teacher who had previously molested children at two archdiocesan schools.

M.R. claims the Seattle Archdiocese is liable for his abuse because they knew teacher Edward Courtney posed a risk to children. The lawsuit claims Courtney’s abuse at two church-run schools was known. But the church still helped him gain employment in the public school system where he came into contact with M.R.

Jason Amala, M.R’s attorney, says his client is pleased with the settlement.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Lawsuits Filed Against Priests

NEW MEXICO
Rio Grande Sun

Wheeler Cowperthwaite SUN Staff Writer

In 1986, when John Doe 46 was nine years old, he was selected as one of the altar boys for the Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish, in Española.

For the next two years, he was allegedly raped by former priest Armando Martinez, who was killed in 1997.

Doe is just one of the many victims of sexual abuse and violence at the hands of Catholic clergy in Rio Arriba County. Because he is a victim of sexual abuse, he is only named as “John Doe” in court documents.

On Sept. 12, the Santa Fe Archdiocese, which covers Rio Arriba County, released a list of 75 priests who were found to have credibly abused children while serving in the area.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

10 new clergy sex abuse suits include Brouillard bringing 2 boys to US, Canada

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio, heugenio@guampdn.com Sept. 26, 2017

Ten clergy sex abuse cases have been filed in local court, including one alleging that former priest Louis Brouillard engaged in group sex with minors and had two altar boys accompany him on summer road trips to Minnesota and Canada, where he continued to sexually abuse and molest them.

Brouillard already has been accused, in dozens of lawsuits, of abusing boys on Guam between 1956 and 1981.

The lawsuit filed by F.S.L. in the Superior Court of Guam states Brouillard, who left Guam for Minnesota in 1981, continued to sexually abuse Guam children by having them flown out to him on the mainland.

The 10 clergy abuse cases were filed through Sept. 26, by attorney Michael Berman of the law firm of Berman O’Connor & Mann.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Vatican Responds to Allegations That Ex-Auditor Was Ousted

VATICAN CITY
National Catholic Register

Elise Harris/CNA/EWTN News

VATICAN CITY — The Vatican has issued a response to allegations made by former auditor general Libero Milone, who, three months after mysteriously stepping down in the middle of a five-year mandate, has said he was “threatened” into resignation by an “old guard” opposed to his work.

The Vatican’s Sept. 24 statement voiced “surprise and regret” at the allegations. It said that by speaking out, Milone “failed in the agreement to keep confidential the reasons for his resignation from office,” noting that, according to the statutes of his department, Milone’s task had been to “analyze the budgets and accounts” of the Holy See and its related administrations specifically.

“Unfortunately, the office directed by Milone exceeded its powers and illegally commissioned an external firm to carry out investigative activities on the private lives of representatives of the Holy See,” the statement said.

“In addition to constituting a crime,” the act “irreparably crippled the trust placed in Mr. Milone, who, placed in front of his responsibilities, freely agreed to resign.”

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Ex-Vatican auditor says he was forced out by ‘set-up’

VATICAN CITY
Catholic Herald

However, Vatican officials accused him of spying on the private lives of his superiors

The Holy See’s former auditor general, Libero Milone, has said he was forced to step down earlier this year after uncovering possible illegal activity. Vatican officials have hit back, however, accusing him of spying.

Mr Milone claimed on Saturday he was forced out over false accusations by an old guard opposed to reform. Speaking to a group of reporters, he said he was speaking out because “I couldn’t allow any longer a small group of powers to [defame] my reputation for their shady games”.

‘I wanted to do good for the Church, to reform it like I was asked, but they wouldn’t let me,” Mr Milone added.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Diocese of Crookston – Suit in judge’s hands

MINNESOTA
Crookston Times

Marben has until Dec. 19 to rule on suit brought forth by Vasek against Bishop Hoeppner

A northwest Minnesota judge has less than three months to rule on a lawsuit accusing the Diocese of Crookston and its bishop of covering up abuse of a man who reported being sexually abused by one of their priests more than 40 years ago. District Judge Kurt Marben has until December 19, 2017 to make a decision in the case involving Ron Vasek, a parishioner in the Tabor Area who says he was abused by former Msgr. Roger Grundhaus when he was 16 years old while on a trip to Ohio in 1971.

The lawsuit against Diocese Bishop Michael Hoeppner accuse him of coercion and inflicting emotional distress. Vasek told the Grand Forks Herald that he agreed to drop the coercion charge against Hoeppner in exchange for a copy of the letter Hoeppner asked him to sign in October 2015 that recanted his allegations of abuse against Grundhaus. The remaining count against Hoeppner, accusing him of inflicting emotional distress, has not been settled.

The five counts specifically involving the Diocese, which include two nuisance counts, one count of negligence, one count of negligent supervision and one count of negligent retention will be decided by Judge Marben.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Barbara Blaine, founder of sex abuse survivor group SNAP, dies

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Reporter

by Bill Frogameni

Barbara Blaine, the founder and former longtime president of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, has passed away at age 61 in Utah, where she was vacationing with her husband.

According to a Sept. 24 statement from Blaine’s family, the renowned advocate for victims of childhood sexual abuse by clergy died after falling ill from a sudden, unexpected cardiac condition Sept. 18. By many accounts, Blaine was known to keep herself in excellent physical shape, a fact that made the loss that much heavier for family, friends and fellow survivors.

“I’m just shocked and have profound sadness,” said Barbara Dorris, SNAP’s current managing director. “The world has lost a very wonderful woman. I’m sad. That’s all we can be. She was way too young, wasn’t sick. The only word is ‘sad.’ ”

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Barbara Blaine, founder of priest-abuse victims group SNAP, dies at 61

ILLINOIS
Chicago Tribune

Manya Brachear PashmanContact Reporter
Chicago Tribune

Barbara Blaine — the founder of SNAP, a prominent activist group in the Roman Catholic Church’s clergy-abuse crisis — died Sunday in Utah at 61.

The cause of death was a condition resulting from a sudden tear in a blood vessel in her heart, her family said in a statement Monday.

“Her relentless advocacy enabled millions to eventually accept a long unbelievable reality: that tens of thousands of priests raped and fondled hundreds of thousands of kids while bishops hid these heinous crimes,” said Barbara Dorris, the managing director of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, the group Blaine helped start.

“Her contributions to a safer society would be hard to overstate,” she added.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

National Conference Announced to Address Educator Sexual Misconduct and Abuse in Public and Private Schools

MASSACHUSETTS
MassKids
Durso Law

September 25, 2017
Contact: Jetta Bernier – jetta@masskids.org – 617-827-5218

PRESS RELEASE

September 18, 20017 Over two hundred education leaders, legal experts, and child abuse prevention advocates from across New England will convene in Boston on October 20th for a national conference on “Innovative Strategies to Prevent Child Sexual Abuse in Public and Private Schools.” Topic areas will cover issues relating to training of staff and volunteers about sexual abuse and how to prevent it, screening prospective employees to eliminate unsafe applicants, developing codes of standards to identify prohibited boundary violating behaviors, and responding to suspected or disclosed cases of sexual misconduct or abuse. Goals of the event will be to gain support for this core set of safe child standards, detail plans to disseminate these standards nationally, and establish post-conference networking and technical assistance for participants once they return to their communities and schools.

“According to the U.S. Department of Education, 10% or 4.5 million school children K-12 report having had inappropriate sexual contact with someone in their school – in a third of cases, by a teacher or coach,” said MassKids director Jetta Bernier, whose group has been leading the effort to address educator sexual abuse and misconduct in Massachusetts. “Because child sexual abuse is significantly under-reported and few states keep publicly accessible records of school personnel disciplined for inappropriate or illegal behavior, these numbers are likely to be conservative.” She noted that in Pennsylvania, where such records are available, half of the 234 teacher licenses suspended or revoked in one year were for sexual misconduct or abuse.

Private schools are not immune from the threat of sexual abuse. Investigative reporting by the Boston Globe’s Spotlight Team in 2016 and 2017 has documented sexual abuse of more than 200 students in 67 New England private schools over the past 25 years. Abusers included teachers, coaches, administrators, and other staff members. At the time of the Globe’s reporting, at least 90 students or families had filed lawsuits, 37 school employees had been fired or forced to resign, and nearly two dozen employees had pled guilty or were convicted on criminal charges of sexually abusing children.

Jeff Dion of the National Center for Victims of Crime said the conference would also address the practice known as “passing the trash,” – the failing to report a suspected case of sexual abuse, and allowing or encouraging a school employee to resign, often under a confidentiality agreement which neither police, district attorneys nor parents can open. “We can no longer allow those who abuse children in our schools to get a free pass to seek employment in another school district or state where they can continue to pose a threat to children,” said Dion.

Carmen Durso, whose Boston-based law firm has seen a significant increase in cases brought against schools by former students, pointed to another problematic practice. “Too many schools faced with a credible report of sexual abuse choose to conduct their own internal investigation rather than report to the police or to child protective services as mandated by law,” he said. “The disbelief that a member of their staff could sexually abuse a child, concern about the impact of public disclosure, and the fear of legal retaliation from the alleged abuser, should no longer trump what should be a fundamental priority in every school, that is, keeping our children safe from the devastating impact of child sexual abuse.”

###
About MassKids

MassKids is a 58-year-old, private child advocacy organization which serves as State Chapter of Prevent Child Abuse America and directs the Enough Abuse Campaign to prevent child sexual abuse. It has produced research-based training tools specifically for schools, youth organizations, and parents, as well as policy tools, including “Child Sexual Abuse Safe Child Standards.” It maintains an on-line Resource Bank with over 75 annotated links to a variety of prevention resources for schools. It recently announced “Enough! Preventing Child Sexual Abuse in My School,” a one-hour, interactive online course developed specifically to support schools in addressing sexual misconduct and abuse. www.enoughabuse.org
About The National Center for Victims of Crime

The National Center for Victims of Crime is the nation’s leading resource and advocacy organization serving victims of all types of crime. Founded in 1985, the National Center has a proven record of accomplishment in working across disciplines to effect changes in public policy and culture. It has crafted substantive tools to combat child sex abuse, including its 2014 publication, “Preventing Child Sexual Abuse in Youth-Serving Organizations; Guidelines for Managers and Parents.” As part of its efforts at cross-discipline collaboration, the National Center has convened more than a dozen national-scope conferences. www.ncvc.org

DURSO LAW
LAW OFFICE OF CARMEN L. DURSO
175 Federal Street, Suite 1425
Boston, MA 02110-2287
Tel: 617-728-9123 – Fax: 617-426-7972
carmen@dursolaw.com
www.dursolaw.com

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Church stoked tithing with unemployment scam, ex-members say

NORTH CAROLINA
WTOP

SPINDALE, N.C. (AP) — When Randy Fields’ construction company faced potential ruin because of the cratering economy, he pleaded with his pastor at Word of Faith Fellowship church to reduce the amount of money he was required to tithe every week.

To his shock, Fields said church founder Jane Whaley proposed a divine plan that would allow him to continue tithing at least 10 percent of his income to the secretive evangelical church while helping his company survive: He would file fraudulent unemployment claims on behalf of his employees. She called it, he said, “God’s plan.”

Fields and 10 other former congregants told The Associated Press that they and dozens of employees who were church members filed bogus claims at Word of Faith Fellowship leaders’ direction, and said they had been interviewed at length about the false claims by investigators with the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

The unemployment allegations were uncovered as part of the AP’s ongoing investigation into Word of Faith, which has about 750 congregants in rural North Carolina and a total of nearly 2,000 members in its branches in Brazil and Ghana and its affiliations in Sweden, Scotland and other countries.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

SNAP founder Barbara Blaine dies at age 61

ILLINOIS
Fox 32

CHICAGO (Fox 32 News) – Barbara Blaine, the founder of a key group that worked tirelessly to bring pedophile priests to justice, has passed away.

Her organization, SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) said on Sunday that she had died after a cardiac event.

“She will be remembered for her tireless efforts on behalf of abuse survivors around the world,” SNAP said in a statement.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Barbara Blaine, SNAP Founder, Advocate For Victims Of Clergy Sexual Abuse, Dies

UNITED STATES
International Business Times

BY SHREESHA GHOSH @SHREESHA_94 ON 09/25/17

Barbara Blaine, who founded the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) and was also the former president of the organization, died Sunday in Utah at the age of 61, the support group confirmed.

Last Monday, Blaine suffered a spontaneous coronary artery dissection, her family said in a statement to Reuters. The rare condition involves a tear in one or more blood vessels in the heart of the patient.

The managing director of SNAP, Barbara Dorris, issued a statement Sunday regarding Blaine’s contribution and pioneer work for the survivors of clergy sexual abuse. “Few people have done more to protect kids and help victims than Barbara Blaine. Her relentless advocacy enabled millions to eventually accept a long unbelievable reality: that tens of thousands of priests raped and fondled hundreds of thousands of kids while bishops hid these heinous crimes. She started-and for almost 30 years-worked extremely hard to help build the world’s most successful organization of child sex abuse victims. Her contributions to a safer society would be hard to overstate,” Dorris wrote on SNAP’s official page.

People on social media expressed their condolences for the woman who helped numerous survivors of abuse.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

From the Family of Barbara Blaine

UNITED STATES
BishopAccountability.org

September 24, 2017

We can now share with you that Barbara has peacefully passed away following an unexpected and rare cardiac event (SCAD) that occurred this past Monday. Her final hours were spent surrounded by her husband, Howard and sisters Marcia and Marian. From the window in her room, she was basked in the bright sunlight cascading off the serene Utah landscape. Barbara loved hiking those rocky climbs with Howard, and her indomitable spirit was in harmony with the unshakable vistas.

From running a homeless shelter that she helped found, to acting as a tireless voice for those sexually abused who might otherwise have been silenced by the Catholic Church, Barbara was a fierce and tireless warrior on behalf of social justice. Her passion for progressive and compassionate advocacy was only matched by the love she felt towards family. Those fortunate enough to have known her are readily familiar with the absolute commitment she felt towards her close circle; we were all lucky to have been graced by her love.

Barbara was taken far too early, and we may never find rhyme or reason in the manner of her passing, but we can forever find inspiration and purpose through the manner in which she lived. She was a truly remarkable human being, and her spirit will remain with us, shaping our choices for the better, erring us away from petty concerns and encouraging us to lean in towards compassion, that we might honor her memory.

A Celebration of Barbara’s life will be held at a future date.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Pope’s Sex Abuse Advisers Also Look Into Children of Priests

VATICAN CITY
US News

By NICOLE WINFIELD, Associated Press

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis’ committee of advisers on protecting children from sexually abusive priests is expanding its workload to include the needs and rights of children fathered by Roman Catholic priests.

Committee members told The Associated Press on Sunday that a working group is looking into developing guidelines that can be used by dioceses around the world to ensure that children born to priests are adequately cared for.

“It’s a horrendous problem in many cultures, and it’s not something that is readily talked about,” commission member Dr. Krysten Winter-Green said.

Indeed, the church has tried to keep such children secret for centuries, because of the scandal of priests breaking their vows of celibacy. But it has gained visibility after Irish bishops published guidelines earlier this year that focused on ensuring the wellbeing of the child and the mother, who often suffer psychological problems from the stigma and silence imposed on them by the church.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Vatican says it terminated auditor general’s tenure for spying on senior officials

ROME
Japan Times

ROME – The Vatican said Sunday it had been forced to oust its former auditor general — who resigned without explanation in June — because he had been spying on senior officials.

In the latest scandal to embroil the centuries-old institution, Libero Milone had accused the Vatican of getting rid of him because his investigations into possible illegal activity had hit too close to home.

Just hours after the story broke, the Vatican issued a furious response.

“Milone’s office illegally appointed an external company to carry out investigations into the private lives of members of the Holy See,” it said in a statement.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

SNAP founder Barbara Blaine, who advocated for survivors of clergy sex abuse, dies

ILLINOIS
WLS

CHICAGO (WLS) — Barbara Blaine, who did pioneering work on behalf of individuals abused by priests and founded the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), died on Sunday, the organization said in a statement.

Blaine, 61, who resigned as SNAP president in February, was surrounded by family and friends when she died, the statement said.

Blaine stepped down after three decades of campaigning to force the Catholic Church to recognize the extent of the scandal and compensate thousands of people affected.

Blaine did not say why she resigned from SNAP.

She founded SNAP in 1988, years after she was abused as an 8th grader by a Toledo, Ohio priest who taught at the Catholic school she attended, according to the organization’s website. Her pleas for help to Toledo’s bishop were ignored. The first SNAP meeting of victims was held at a Holiday Inn in Chicago.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Lawsuit: Catholic school student left in closet, abused

GUAM
The Guam Daily Post

Mindy Aguon |The Guam Daily Post

The latest lawsuit to be filed against the Archdiocese of Agana alleges a Catholic school student was punished in the early 60s and left in a closet for several hours and sexually abused by a priest.

R.A.J., 62, who used his initials to protect his identity, filed a lawsuit today against San Vicente Catholic School and the Archdiocese of Agana.

When R.A.J. was 6 years old, he attended San Vicente Catholic School where Zoilo Camacho was a priest.

The civil complaint filed in the District Court alleges that one day R.A.J. snuck out of the school playground and ran down the street to Aguon Store to get some snacks. On his way back, one of the nuns who worked at the school caught him and punished him by putting him in a closet.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

News: Barbara Blaine, Founder and former president of Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, has passed away

UNITED STATES
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release Sunday, September 24, 2017

Barbara Blaine, the founder and former president of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests passed away today, surrounded by her family and friends.

At this time, the family has asked that you respect their privacy until they make a statement.

The following is a statement by Barbara Dorris, SNAP managing director, regarding Barbara’s pioneering work on behalf of survivors of clergy sexual abuse.

“Few people have done more to protect kids and help victims than Barbara Blaine. Her relentless advocacy enabled millions to eventually accept a long unbelievable reality: that tens of thousands of priests raped and fondled hundreds of thousands of kids while bishops hid these heinous crimes. She started-and for almost 30 years-worked extremely hard to help build the world’s most successful organization of child sex abuse victims. Her contributions to a safer society would be hard to overstate.”

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Barbara Blaine, founder of group for clergy abuse victims, dies at 61

ILLINOIS
WHTC

By Alex Dobuzinskis

(Reuters) – Barbara Blaine, who founded the ‘Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests’ and led the organization until earlier this year, died on Sunday at age 61 in Utah, her family and the organization said.

Blaine suffered a spontaneous coronary artery dissection last Monday, her family said in a statement. The rare occurrence involves a tear in one or more blood vessels of the heart.

She died on Sunday with her husband, Howard, and her sisters at her side, the family statement said.

The organization she founded in 1988 is a leading advocacy and support group for victims of sexual abuse by clergy. It has thousands of members and works to help people from a range of faith traditions.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Barbara Blaine, founder of abuse victims group SNAP, dies

ILLINOIS
ABC News

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
CHICAGO — Sep 25, 2017

Barbara Blaine, the founder and former president of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, has died. She was 61.

The organization known as SNAP announced on its Facebook page that Blaine died Sunday following a recent cardiac event.

In a statement, SNAP managing director Barbara Dorris praised Blaine’s work with victims of clergy sexual abuse.

“Few people have done more to protect kids and help victims than Barbara Blaine,” Dorris said. “Her contributions to a safer society would be hard to overstate.”

Blaine founded SNAP in 1988, years after she was abused as an 8th grader by a Toledo, Ohio, priest who taught at the Catholic school she attended, according to the organization’s website. Her pleas for help to Toledo’s bishop were ignored. The first SNAP meeting of victims was held at a Chicago hotel.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Another clergy sex abuse case filed in federal court

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Sep 25, 2017

By Krystal Paco

Another clergy sex abuse case has been filed in the District Court of Guam. 62-year-old R.A.J. alleges he was sexually molested by now deceased, father Ziolo Camacho.

The incident occurred at San Vicente Catholic School when R.A.J. was about 6 or 7 years old.

Court documents state the boy was put in the closet for hours by a nun who caught him sneaking off campus to go to the nearby store.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

From the Family of Barbara Blaine

ST. GEORGE (UT)
The Family of Barbara Blaine

September 24, 2017

We can now share with you that Barbara has peacefully passed away following an unexpected and rare cardiac event (SCAD) that occurred this past Monday. Her final hours were spent surrounded by her husband, Howard and sisters Marcia and Marian. From the window in her room, she was basked in the bright sunlight cascading off the serene Utah landscape. Barbara loved hiking those rocky climbs with Howard, and her indomitable spirit was in harmony with the unshakable vistas.

From running a homeless shelter that she helped found, to acting as a tireless voice for those sexually abused who might otherwise have been silenced by the Catholic Church, Barbara was a fierce and tireless warrior on behalf of social justice. Her passion for progressive and compassionate advocacy was only matched by the love she felt towards family. Those fortunate enough to have known her are readily familiar with the absolute commitment she felt towards her close circle; we were all lucky to have been graced by her love.

Barbara was taken far too early, and we may never find rhyme or reason in the manner of her passing, but we can forever find inspiration and purpose through the manner in which she lived. She was a truly remarkable human being, and her spirit will remain with us, shaping our choices for the better, erring us away from petty concerns and encouraging us to lean in towards compassion, that we might honor her memory.

A Celebration of Barbara’s life will be held at a future date.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Tools for thinking about the Vatican’s two latest scandals

ROME
Crux

John L. Allen Jr. EDITOR

ROME – Journalists often are accused of reporting only bad news, and there’s often a fair bit of truth to the charge. Experience shows that scandal and controversy sell, while feel-good, uplifting material sometimes struggles to find a market, but that’s not really an excuse for failing to present the whole picture.

At the same time, the press also has an important role to play in bringing hard truths to light, which institutions usually would prefer to keep hidden. If the Catholic Church has learned anything from the sexual abuse scandals, it’s that refusing to confront bad news only makes it worse.

There are two such less-than-edifying stories bubbling in and around the Vatican at the moment, so here I’ll try to offer some resources for thinking intelligently about each – without implying that such situations are the only things the Vatican, or the Catholic Church, has going on at the moment worth knowing.

Vatican diplomat and child pornography

On Sept. 15, the Vatican issued a brief press release announcing that one of its priest-diplomats at the papal embassy in Washington, D.C., was suspected by the U.S. government of possible violation of child pornography laws and had been recalled to Rome.

The Promoter of Justice in the Vatican’s tribunal, it said, had opened an investigation and had requested information from the U.S. government, adding that those investigations are “subject to confidentiality.”

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Bishop Zubik marking 10 years at helm of Pittsburgh diocese

PENNSYLVANIA
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

PETER SMITH
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
petersmith@post-gazette.com
SEP 24, 2017

Scores of young adults, most of them dressed business-casual for the after-work gathering, chatted over Coronas and nachos on a crowded rooftop bar at the Steel Cactus in Shadyside on a warm spring night.

One arrival didn’t fit the demographic — a tall, slightly stooped, gray-haired man dressed in black, who patiently made his way through the crowd, stopping for short conversations.

Eventually the banter subsided, the participants recited a Hail Mary and an organizer introduced Bishop David A. Zubik as the speaker of the evening’s gathering. The event was one of a series known as Theology on Tap, a casual setting for young and often single Catholic adults to meet, network and talk spirituality over suds.

Taking the Catholic Church beyond its buildings, trying to reach an age group that’s often taking itself out of the church entirely — the evening’s themes neatly captured some of Bishop Zubik’s highest priorities as he approaches the 10th anniversary this Thursday of his installation as bishop of the six-county Diocese of Pittsburgh.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Judge begins decision process in suit against Crookston diocese, bishop

MINNESOTA
Duluth News Tribune

By Andrew Hazzard

CROOKSTON, Minn. — A northwest Minnesota judge has until Dec. 19, 2017, to rule on a lawsuit accusing the Diocese of Crookston and its bishop of covering up abuse and inflicting emotional damages on a man who says his bid to become a deacon was rejected because he reported being sexually abused by a priest more than 40 years ago.

On Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017, Minnesota Ninth District Court Judge Kurt Marben took under advisement a lawsuit from Tabor, Minn., resident Ron Vasek against the Diocese of Crookston and Bishop Michael Joseph Hoeppner. This gives him 90 days to make a decision in the case, according to the Polk County Clerk of Court’s Office, meaning a ruling is due by Dec. 19.

The lawsuit accuses Hoeppner of coercion and inflicting emotional distress. It says that in 1971, Vasek was sexually abused by Monsignor Roger Grundhaus while on a trip to Ohio when he was 16 years old. In 2010, his son, the Rev. Craig Vasek, was ordained as priest in the Diocese of Crookston, and Ron Vasek tried to become a deacon. That’s when he claims he revealed his abuse and was told by Hoeppner to stay quiet, which he believes is an act of blackmail.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Auditor says he was forced to quit Vatican after finding irregularities

VATICAN CITY
Reuters

Philip Pullella

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – The Vatican’s first auditor-general, who resigned without explanation in June, has broken his silence, saying he was forced to step down with trumped-up accusations after discovering evidence of possible illegal activity.

Speaking to reporters from four media organizations including Reuters in the office of his lawyers in Rome, Libero Milone also said he believed that some in the Vatican wanted to slow down Pope Francis’s efforts at financial reform.

He said he could not give details of the irregularities he had found because of non-disclosure agreements. Reuters was unable to independently verify his assertions, which the Vatican strongly contested.

The Holy See’s deputy secretary of state, Archbishop Giovanni Angelo Becciu, told Reuters in an interview that Milone’s claims were “false and unjustified”.

“He went against all the rules and was spying on the private lives of his superiors and staff, including me,” Becciu said. “If he had not agreed to resign, we would have prosecuted him.”

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Out of ‘Spotlight,’ the movie, comes the Spotlight Fellowship

MASSACHUSETTS
Boston Globe

Today’s report started with the Academy Award-winning film “Spotlight.”

The film told the story of the Globe’s groundbreaking investigation of child sexual abuse by Catholic clergy. In 2016, the movie’s producers won the Oscar for Best Picture.

But the team at one of the companies behind the film — Participant Media, founded by Jeff Skoll and dedicated to entertainment that inspires social change — wanted to do more to champion the work of investigative journalists. So they created the Spotlight Investigative Journalism Fellowship.

Participant Media, along with the film’s partners Open Road Films and First Look Media, fund the fellowship, which provides recipients the opportunity to work on their own in-depth investigative stories alongside The Boston Globe’s Spotlight Team.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Father Paul J. Radetski not guilty of sexual abuse of a minor

WISCONSIN
Fox 11

GREEN BAY (WLUK) — A priest has been found not guilty of sexual abuse of a minor according to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith at the Vatican.

That information was released today by the Diocese of Green Bay. Father Paul J. Radetski “has been granted senior priest status, and his restrictions from exercising public priestly ministry have been lifted. He will serve the diocese in a limited capacity in his senior priest status,” the Diocese of Green Bay says.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Menasha priest found not guilty of sexual abuse of a child in church trial

WISCONSIN
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Raquel Rutledge, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Sept. 23, 2017

A Menasha priest accused in 2010 of sexually abusing a minor has been found not guilty through canonical judicial proceedings.

Father Paul Radetski had been placed on administrative leave from his duties at St. John’s, St. Mary’s and St. Patrick parishes in Menasha after civil authorities were alerted to what were said by the Catholic Diocese of Green Bay at the time to be credible allegations.

“Father has been granted senior priest status, and his restrictions from exercising public priestly ministry have been lifted,” a Saturday press release from the diocese states. “He will serve the diocese in a limited capacity in his senior priest status.”

Under canonical proceedings, the ruling was made by three canon lawyers and judges from outside the diocese following a trial.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

In Vatican trial, witness calls spending on cardinal’s apartment ‘anomalous’

ROME
Crux

John L. Allen Jr. EDITOR

ROME – In the latest hearing on Friday of the Vatican’s first-ever trial for financial crimes, an official of the Government of the Vatican City State testified that a remodeling project for the private Vatican apartment of Italian Cardinal Tarcisio bypassed the normal bidding process, and was “singular” and “anomalous.”

That remodeling project is at the heart of the case, since two Italian laymen and former officials of a foundation for a papally-sponsored pediatric hospital in Rome called the Bambino Gesù are accused of diverting roughly $500,000 of the hospital’s money to help cover the costs.

The defendants are Giuseppe Profiti, the former president of both the hospital and its foundation, and Massimo Spina, who served as treasurer during Profiti’s tenure.

The Government of the Vatican State is responsible for the 108-acre physical footprint of the Vatican, and generally approves and oversees all building projects within its territory.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

‘Pontifical secret’ in abuse cases needs review, advisers tell pope

ROME
Crux

Carol Glatz CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

ROME – Members of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors believe they have done important work over the past three years, but, because there is so much more to be done, they presented Pope Francis with a list of suggestions, including changing the way confidentiality is imposed during church investigations of child sexual abuse.

Pope Francis had his first face-to-face discussion with commission members Sept. 21 and, during the meeting, members summarized the work they have accomplished and detailed a number of recommendations, including regarding the invocation of “pontifical secret” during abuse investigations and trials.

Vatican norms maintain the imposition of “pontifical secret” on the church’s judicial handling of clerical sex abuse and other grave crimes, which means they are dealt with in strict confidentiality.

Vatican experts have said it was designed to protect the dignity of everyone involved, including the victim, the accused, their families and their communities. Confidentiality, however, is meant to have limits in the relationship with civil authorities as bishops are required to comply with civil law that requires reporting of abuse accusations.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

University report lifts the lid on child sexual abuse in the Catholic Church

AUSTRALIA
National Catholic Reporter

Sep 23, 2017

by Kieran Tapsell

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA — The most comprehensive report ever published on the systemic reasons behind child sexual abuse in the Catholic Church has recently been released.

The August 2017 report, Child Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church: An Interpretive Review of the Literature and Public Inquiry Reports, examined 26 commissions of inquiry, scientific research and literature since 1985 to find common features in the culture, history and structures of the church and the psychological, social and theological factors that contributed to the tragedy.

The report, five years in the making, comes from a research team at the Centre for Global Research at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) University headed by Desmond Cahill and Peter Wilkinson.

The research team’s conclusions in this highly readable 379-page document confirm the view of the psychologist Philip Zimbardo that if you find many bad apples in a barrel, there has to be something wrong with the barrel. The pattern of abuse and cover up was the same all over the world.

Cahill is a psychologist and professor emeritus of RMIT University, and Wilkinson holds a licentiate and doctorate in missiology from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome. Both are former Catholic priests, Cahill of the Melbourne Archdiocese and Wilkinson formerly with the Missionary Society of St. Columban.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Lawsuit: Altar boy ‘traumatized’ by abuse

GUAM
The Guam Daily Post

Mindy Aguon | The Guam Daily Post Sep 22, 2017

A former altar boy who aspired to join the priesthood alleges he was sexually abused by a priest when he was 11.

R.A.S., 73, who used initials to protect his identity, has accused Louis Brouillard of teaching him to masturbate while in the church social hall at the Mangilao parish in 1956, and nearly drowning the boy when he fought back from being fondled while on a swimming outing.

A civil complaint was filed in the District Court of Guam yesterday alleging Brouillard showed favoritism toward R.A.S. after the altar boy shared his interest in the priesthood. The priest allegedly allowed the boy to drink the wine after Mass and treated him differently than the other altar boys.

When he was 11, R.A.S. states Brouillard came to his home asking his parents’ permission to help him move things around the church. While in the church social hall, R.A.S. said Brouillard came out naked wearing only a robe, exposing himself to the boy.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Lawsuit: Priest tried to drown boy after abusing him

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio, heugenio@guampdn.com

Former island priest Louis Brouillard tried to drown an altar boy after he molested him while swimming, according to a lawsuit filed Thursday in federal court. The lawsuit also states Brouillard abused him on other occasions, purportedly to teach him about sex.

The plaintiff, identified in court documents only as R.A.S. to protect his privacy, said he was 10 or 11 when he became an altar boy in or about 1955. But it was around 1956 that Brouillard started sexually abusing and molesting him, the lawsuit states.

R.A.S., now 73, said one day, instead of dropping altar boys home, Brouillard took them swimming. R.A.S. told Brouillard he didn’t know how to swim, and the priest said he would teach him, the complaint states. Brouillard allegedly told them to swim naked, but R.A.S. refused to take off his clothes.

The lawsuit states R.A.S. started squirming and moved Brouillard’s hand away when the priest started groping and touching his private parts.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Decades after testifying on sex abuse in Canada, Indian doctor wanted for sexual assault there

CANADA
Indian Expres

Written by ANANTHAKRISHNAN G | New Delhi | Published:September 22, 2017

As a practising psychiatrist in St John’s in Newfoundland in the 1970s, Dr Omesh Chandra Kashyap had a role in blowing the lid off Canada’s first and the world’s biggest paedophilia scandal, involving the Roman Catholic Church. He returned to India in 1991 claiming threats to life, only to be charged with sexual assault himself. Accusing him of having assaulted his former patients, Canada sought his extradition to stand trial.

A trial court granted the sanction, the Delhi High Court upheld it, but now the Supreme Court has stayed the extradition. Issuing a notice to the government, a bench of Justices Ranjan Gogoi and Navin Sinha sought to know “why the matter should not be remanded for reconsideration by the Union of India”.

Kashyap’s contention was that the government had not taken into consideration the “circumstances” that had led to the extradition request. Reached for comments, Kashyap, now 77, said, “The case is still sub judice. I cannot comment on it now.” For the “circumstances”, The Indian Express went through records before the additional chief metropolitan magistrate (ACMM), Patiala House Courts, who had conducted the extradition enquiry.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Former Church of England official jailed for indecent assaults on young girls

UNITED KINGDOM
Boston Standard

A leading Church of England official who carried out sex attacks on young girls was today (Thursday) jailed for six years at Lincoln Crown Court.

John Bailey, 76, who was director of education for the diocese of Lincoln from 1996 until he resigned in 2002 , pleaded guilty to 25 charges of indecent assault some of which dated from more than 60 years ago.

The court heard that his victims complained years ago about his behaviour to the diocese but no action was taken at the time.

Bailey of Ash Tree Park, Kippax, Leeds, admitted 25 charges of indecent assault involving three young girls aged under 14.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Pope: Firm measures for clergy who abuse minors

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio, heugenio@guampdn.com Sept. 22, 2017

Pope Francis this week said the Catholic church will apply the firmest measures to all those who have betrayed their call as clergy and abused children.

His statement comes as Guam awaits the results of the Vatican’s canonical trial of Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron, who has been accused by former altar boys of raping and sexually abusing them in the 1970s.

The pope on Thursday addressed the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, which gathered for its plenary assembly at the Vatican.

“We are ashamed of the abuses committed by holy ministers, who should be the most trustworthy,” the pope said in his prepared remarks.

He said the Catholic church irrevocably and at all levels seeks to apply the principle of “zero tolerance” against the sexual abuse of minors.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

More than a dozen abusive clergy served local parishes

NEW MEXICO
Taos News

By Cody Hooks
chooks@taosnews.com

Armando Martinez grew up in Questa, the village of alfalfa fields and a couple of thousand people at the western base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Martinez didn’t look for work at the nearby molybdenum mine, like a lot of young men from the village. Instead, he went into a Catholic seminary, became a priest and headed parishes from Belen to Tucumcari, Springer to El Rito.

In May 1997, Martinez was found naked and dead, his body left in a ditch near Bernalillo. His murderer turned himself in days later.

The deep, reverberating shock of losing Martinez in such a horrific way was only made more nerve-wracking when then-Archbishop Michael Sheehan revealed in a press conference that Martinez had been restricted from his duties as a priest in 1993 after allegations of sexual misconduct with a minor were made against him.

Sheehan’s revelation about Martinez came at the beginning of a tidal wave of allegations of sexual abuse and subsequent lawsuits against the Roman Catholic Church and the Archdiocese of Santa Fe, in particular.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

New details from man who claims church covered up sexual abuse

NORTH DAKOTA
Valley News Live

GRAND FORKS, N.D. (Valley News Live) New information from the man who claims a priest molested him and then the church tried to cover it up.

He’s suing the Crookston Dioceses for trying to cover-up the abuse and is worried there could be more victims still out there.

“Right now we’re going to be building a cabinet for a gal.”

Ron Vasek is the ‘Spare Husband.’

“Kind of anything that somebody needs done.”

The family-man handyman runs this business with his son.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

An Australian priest is being investigated in Papua New Guinea over confessional allegations

AUSTRALIA/NEW GUINEA
Newcastle Herald

Joanne McCarthy
22 Sep 2017

AN Australian Catholic priest is being investigated by Papua New Guinea police for allegedly touching female students during confession after a bishop denied the priest “caressed their thighs to get some personal satisfaction”.

Vincentian priest Father Neil Lams allegedly held a teenage girl on his lap, “cuddled” some girls and bought gifts for them, touched girls on the thighs during confession, asked them questions about whether they had sex with their boyfriends and “how many times”, slapped some students on the head and called others “sweet baby”.

In an email to the Newcastle Herald Father Lams said an investigation was “currently in progress”, but “the allegations are at present based on gossip and I am not guilty of any criminal activity in any way”. He declined to respond to questions.

Father Lams was ordained in Australia in May, 2011 and served short periods in Sydney and Townsville before Melbourne Archbishop Denis Hart appointed him assistant priest to the Victorian parish of Malvern in 2014. After a short term Father Lams requested a missionary appointment and was sent to PNG by the Vincentian order.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

CAP sessions announced for October

NEW JERSEY
Catholic Star Herald

by Carmela Malerba September 21, 2017

The Office of Child and Youth Protection is announcing CAP (Child Assault Prevention) sessions. CAP is the safe environment training program for adults who have regular contact with minors.

Attendance is required in order to comply with the USCCB’s Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People. The policy of the Diocese of Camden is that adults will attend CAP once every five years.

CAP 1 teaches attendees to recognize child abuse and neglect and how to report to the proper authorities. Adults are taught that children have the right to be safe, strong and free. CAP 1 is for new volunteers and employees.

CAP 2 is called CAP’s Bullying Prevention Program. Cyber-bullying is also presented.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Five appointed to oversight board

PENNSYLVANIA
Altoona Mirror

RUSS O’REILLY
Staff Writer
roreilly@altoonamirror.com

A former chief of staff to a U.S. senator, a former state police criminal investigator, a psychotherapist, a practitioner in spiritual formation and a U.S. attorney for western Pennsylvania have been tapped to create policies to protect children in the local Catholic diocese.

Acting U.S. Attorney Soo C. Song and Bishop Mark L. Bartchak of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown have announced the five people appointed to an Independent Oversight Board for Youth Protection for the diocese.

The diocese created the independent oversight board earlier this year pursuant to a memorandum of understanding between the diocese and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Pennsylvania.

The board will work with a new diocesan director of youth protection, who will be announced in the near future, diocese spokesman Tony DeGol said. The reforms are aimed at preventing child sex abuse and responding swiftly to future allegations.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Pope promises ‘firmest measures possible’ against pedophiles

VATICAN CITY
Daily Herald

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis is promising to respond with the “firmest measures possible” against priests who rape and molest children and says he’ll hold accountable bishops and religious superiors who cover up for them.

Francis met Thursday for the first time with his sex abuse advisory commission, which was created in 2014 to advise him and the Catholic Church on best practices to keep pedophiles out of the priesthood and protect children.

The commission has held educational workshops in dioceses around the world, but has faced such stiff resistance to some of its proposals at the Vatican that its most prominent member, abuse survivor Marie Collins, resigned in frustration in March.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Diocese Names Board to Oversee Clergy Sex Abuse Allegations

PENNSYLVANIA
US News

By JOE MANDAK, Associated Press

PITTSBURGH (AP) — A Roman Catholic diocese has appointed a five-member board to oversee its handling of child sex abuse allegations against clergy as part of an agreement with the federal prosecutor who oversees western Pennsylvania.

Acting U.S. Attorney Soo Song announced the agreement in March with Altoona-Johnstown Bishop Mark Bartchak after a state grand jury alleged a decadeslong abuse coverup. Song’s predecessor had threatened to sue the eight-county central Pennsylvania diocese under a federal racketeering statute if reforms weren’t enacted.

Song and Bartchak on Thursday announced the names of the board members.

The board will be chaired by James W. Brown, former chief of staff to Democratic Sen. Bob Casey and his father, Democratic former Gov. Bob Casey. The other members are Walter “Pete” Carson, a former state police investigator; Eileen Dombo, a professor and assistant dean at The Catholic University of America; Mary Herwig, an abuse victim turned advocate; and J. Alan Johnson, a former U.S. attorney who is perhaps best known for his prosecution of cocaine trafficking in Major League Baseball in an investigation that centered on the Pittsburgh Pirates clubhouse in the 1980s.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Pope admits church realized sex abuse problem ‘a bit late’

VATICAN CITY
Washington Post

By Nicole Winfield | AP September 21

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis on Thursday acknowledged the Catholic Church was “a bit late” in realizing the damage done by priests who rape and molest children, and said that the decades-long practice of moving pedophiles around rather than sanctioning them was to blame.

Francis met Thursday for the first time with his sex abuse advisory commission, a group of outside experts named in 2014 to advise him and the Catholic Church on best practices to keep pedophiles out of the priesthood and protect children.

In his prepared remarks, Francis promised to respond with the “firmest measures possible” against sex abusers. He said bishops and religious superiors bore “primary responsibility” for keeping their flocks safe from abusive priests and would be held accountable if they are negligent.

But Francis also spoke off-the-cuff, admitting that the church’s response to the scandal was slow. Indeed, the Vatican for decades turned a blind eye to the problem and local bishops, rather than defrocking abusers, instead moved them from parish to parish, allowing them to abuse anew.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Abuse survivor calls for more accountability after Pope Francis promises “zero tolerance”

ROME
Crux

Claire Giangravè EDITORIAL ASSISTANT

ROME – Abuse survivor Marie Collins, former member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors until her resignation in March 2017, told Crux that while she believes that “zero tolerance” the only viable option for perpetrators of the sexual abuse of children, more should be done on the side of accountability not only for abusers, but also for those religious leaders and bishops who were negligent.

Her remarks were in reaction to Pope Francis’s speech to the commission members and their families on September 21.

In a strong statement, Francis stressed the importance of ‘zero tolerance’ on sexual abuse, admitted that the Church was late in answering the abuse crisis and promised to never offer mercy to someone found guilty of sexually abusing minors again.

“Zero tolerance is the way to go, but it’s toothless if there isn’t a sanction for anyone who doesn’t operate it,” Collins said.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Pope candidly admits Church ‘arrived late’ in confronting abuse

VATICAN CITY
Reuters

Philip Pullella

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis, in some of his most candid and personal comments on the sexual abuse of children by priests, said on Thursday that the Catholic Church had “arrived late” in dealing with the problem.

Francis, speaking in unscripted remarks to a commission advising him on how to root out sexual abuse, also acknowledged that early in his papacy he had made one bad call in being too lenient with an Italian priest who later went on to abuse again.

He also said he had decided to change current procedures for dealing with abusive priests by eliminating appeals trials in cases where there was definitive proof.

Francis surprised members of the commission by putting aside his entire prepared speech and chatting to them.

“There is the reality that the Church arrived at the consciousness of these crimes a bit late,” he said.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Pope admits Catholic Church waited too long to respond to clergy abuse crisis

VATICAN CITY
National Catholic Reporter

Sep 21, 2017

by Joshua J. McElwee

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis has admitted that the Catholic Church waited too long before taking reports of clergy sexual abuse seriously, suggesting that the former practice of moving priests accused of abuse to new ministries instead of reporting them to authorities kept the church numb to the scope of the situation.

In his first formal meeting Sept. 21 with the now three-year-old Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, the pontiff also called “prophetic” the men and women who urged the church for decades to face the problem.

“I know it has not been easy to start this work,” the pope told the members of the commission in off-the-cuff remarks notable for their frankness. “You have had to swim against the current because there is a reality: the church has taken consciousness about these crimes in a delayed manner.”

“When the consciousness is delayed, the means for resolving the problem are delayed,” said Francis. “I am aware of this difficulty. But it is a reality. I’ll say it so: We have come to this late.”

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

As 108th lawsuit is filed against church, mediation efforts are stalled

GUAM
Pacific News Center

By Janela Carrera – September 20, 2017031

The latest lawsuit once again names Father Louis Brouillard as the alleged perpetrator.

Guam – Although assurances were given that mediation in the scores of sex abuse lawsuits would be completed sometime next month, it looks as though it may not happen until next year. And with that announcement comes more lawsuits being filed against the Archdiocese of Agana.

In a joint filing between Attorney John Terlaje, who represents the archdiocese and Attorney David Lujan, who represents all victims in District Court, the court was notified that mediation efforts may not begin until March of next year.

This timeframe is more realistic, according to the lawyers, given the work that needs to be completed. The parties are also deciding whether they will use retired federal Judge Michael Hogan or sitting Judge Alex Munson to oversee mediation efforts sometime next week.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Another $10M suit filed against priest Brouillard

GUAM
KUAM

By Krystal Paco

The clergy sex abuse lawsuits keep on coming. 66-year-old M.S.B. alleges he was sexually molested by Father Louis Brouillard as an altar boy and Boy Scout.

The alleged abuse occurred in the back room at the Mangilao parish where Brouillard took nude photos of him and also at the rectory where the priest would host sleepovers and lay with the boys in bed and fondle them.

M.S.B. is suing for $10 million.

His filing comes after parties have notified the court that they’ll need more time for mediation talks for dozens of other clergy sex abuse lawsuits.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Retired priest faces judge on child sex abuse charges

PENNSYLVANIA
WPXI

LEECHBURG, Pa. – Channel 11 was there as a retired Westmoreland County priest faced a judge on accusations that he sexually abused a 10-year-old boy.

John T. Sweeney, 74, is accused of abuse in 1991 and 1992 while he was the pastor at St. Margaret Mary in Lower Burrell. He left the Leechburg Magistrate’s Office Wednesday without saying a word to Channel 11.

The boy is now 35 years old, and Attorney General Josh Shapiro said when charges were filed in July, they wanted to file more charges but couldn’t because of his age.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Former Gallup priest on abuser list

NEW MEXICO
Gallup Independent

Published in the Gallup Independent, Gallup, N.M., Sept. 18, 2017

By Elizabeth Hardin-Burrola
Independent correspondent
religion@gallupindependent.com

GALLUP — When Santa Fe Archbishop John C. Wester publicly released a list of names of credibly accused clergy sex abusers Tuesday, his list shed light on a former Gallup priest who had never before been publicly named as a sex abuser.

The Rev. Roman Pfalzer, OFM, who died in 2011, is listed as the 54th credibly accused clergy sex abuser out of 74 names, according to the archbishop’s news release.

Wester’s list, which includes 66 priests, six religious brothers and two deacons, includes the names of four abusers who worked in both the Diocese of Gallup and the Archdiocese of Santa Fe.

Three of the abuser priests have already been publicly identified by both the media and the Diocese of Gallup: the Rev. David Clark, a member of the Claretian Missionary order; the Rev. Robert Kirsch, a Gallup priest who left to become incardinated into the Archdiocese of Santa Fe; and the Rev. Diego Mazon, OFM, a Franciscan friar who was removed from Gallup’s St. Francis Church because of a sex abuse allegation in 2004.

The fourth is Pfalzer, a Franciscan friar who served as a priest at St. Francis Church in Gallup in the early 1950s. Although never publicly named before, Pfalzer has been on a list of suspected clergy sex abusers maintained by the Gallup Independent for the past 15 years.

Gallup woman’s story

In the months after the national Catholic clergy sexual abuse scandal erupted in Boston and spread across the country in 2002, an older woman in Gallup reported troubling stories about Pfalzer’s time in Gallup.

According to the woman, she had been a young, married teenager when a “Father Roman” was assigned to St. Francis Church. The priest made frequent, unwelcome visits to her home, she said, always when her husband was away at work. The woman said Roman visited her with the pretext of inquiring about a disabled family member of hers who lived elsewhere in Gallup. Those visits were uncomfortable, she said, because the priest was always attempting to move physically close to her while she always tried to maintain physical distance from him.

The woman said she believed Roman gave piano lessons to girls at St. Francis Church. When the priest left Gallup, she heard reports that he had inappropriately touched one or more girls, possibly his piano students.

After listening to the woman’s account, a Gallup Independent reporter checked the Official Catholic Directory to see if any priest named Roman was assigned to Gallup during that time. The directory listed the Rev. Roman Pfalzer, OFM, as a priest at St. Francis Church from 1950 to 1951.

The Independent then contacted officials with the Franciscan Province of St. John the Baptist in Cincinnati, Ohio, in an attempt to verify if credible abuse allegations had ever been made against Pfalzer. Those Franciscan officials would not cooperate by providing any information about Pfalzer.

As a result, for the past 15 years, Pfalzer’s name has been on the Independent’s list of suspected clergy abusers. Wester’s announcement Tuesday was the first official confirmation by church authorities that Pfalzer was a credibly accused abuser.

Likely church discipline

Wester outlined four categories of abusers included on the Archdiocese of Santa Fe list. Since Pfalzer had never been the subject of public abuse allegations prior to his death, it is likely he was subjected to internal church discipline as described by Wester: “In the case of canonical processes, the clerics whose names are included either have been dismissed from the clerical state at the end of the canonical process, or have been assigned to a life of prayer and penance, with no ministry possible.”

Wester’s news release stated the list will be updated soon to include abusers’ ministry assignments.

According to a newspaper article from the Santa Fe New Mexican in May 1972, Pfalzer was originally from Louisville, Kentucky, and was ordained a Franciscan priest in 1947. Before working as an assistant at the cathedral in Santa Fe, Pfalzer was previously assigned to churches in Gallup, Roswell and Clovis.

The Official Catholic Directory in 2006 listed Pfalzer as being a retired priest living in the St. Clement Friary in Cincinnati. Pfalzer’s online obituary states Pfalzer died at the age of 93 Dec. 26, 2011, after 64 years as a priest with the Franciscan Province of St. John the Baptist.

Because of Pfalzer’s inclusion on Wester’s list of clergy abusers and his time in Gallup as a priest, the Diocese of Gallup is expected to include Pfalzer’s name on its list of credibly accused abusers. The Gallup Diocese, however, does not move quickly on these matters.

In the case of Diego Mazon, the diocese placed his name on the credibly accused list in April — more than eight years after the Gallup Independent reported Mazon had been removed from ministry because of the abuse allegation and sex abuse lawsuit. Eight other priests, who have either been named as credibly accused abusers by other Catholic dioceses or religious orders or who were named as abusers by claimants in the Diocese of Gallup’s bankruptcy case, have yet to be added to the diocese’s credibly accused list.

Currently, the Diocese of Gallup’s list includes the names of 34 men: 31 priests, one religious brother, one seminarian and one lay religion teacher.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Sex abuse happens across denominations. Here’s how one Protestant minister is helping people heal

UNITED STATES
America

Kaya Oakes
September 20, 2017

A young girl sits in her room as the sounds of physical violence echo down the hall. Her father regularly erupts, a volcano whose rage is fed by the notion that he is the head of a “good Christian family” and that his wife and children must submit to his will. The girl also knows that their church pastor is a pedophile who preys on her sister, but her church has turned inward to protect the pastor instead of reaching out to help her sister. The girl is terrified for her mother, her sister, herself. So she prays, and this offers her peace in the midst of the violence. That peace will sustain her for years to come.

This snapshot from the tumultuous childhood of the Rev. Carol Howard Merritt often leads people to question why she entered ordained ministry. The Southern Baptist Church of her childhood colluded in the violence that surrounded her growing up. In her book Healing Spiritual Wounds, she writes that religion was “complicit in the violence” of her home and church, but she still found hope. Misguided interpretations of Christian teaching, she writes, were “part of the problem,” but the teachings of Christ were also her “cure, solace, and center.” Over time, she came to understand that abusive patterns in religion “did not really represent God,” and after attending Moody Bible Institute, she left the Southern Baptist Church to join the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), where she was ordained and where she began a ministry that focuses on the wounds that can be caused by organized religion and on the spiritual healing that must follow.

For Catholics, the topic of abuse remains a painful one. The recent charges of “sexual offenses” faced by Cardinal George Pell have once again stirred up the debate about the church’s failure to rectify its abusive history, which has caused harm not only to the people abused and their families but to the church as a whole and has resulted in the attrition of many Catholics. A survey by the Public Religion Research Institute in 2015 revealed that half of former Catholics point to the abuse crisis as a primary reason they left the church. Informal conversations with still practicing Catholics often reveal unresolved feelings of betrayal and anger about the abuse crisis. More significantly, abuse has also left a trail of traumatized victims, many of whom are still suffering from physical, psychological and spiritual damage. Spiritual damage, which often means damage to a person’s religious faith or relationship with God, is probably the least discussed and least well understood of these issues, but as Rev. Merritt points out, it can have dramatic effects, especially on deeply religious victims like herself. Yet this damage to one’s faith also offers a unique opportunity for healing.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Vasek asks court Wednesday in TRF to deny diocese’s attempts to throw out his claims

MINNESOTA
Crookston Times

Also, three more priests’ names added to list, and two served at the Diocese of Crookston in the 1940s and 1950s

The Diocese of Crookston will appear in court Wednesday in Thief River Falls on public nuisance and negligence claims made by a man who says he was abused in the early 1970s by former Msgr. Roger Grundhaus. Ron Vasek will ask the court to deny the Diocese of Crookston’s attempts to throw out his claims and, according to a media advisory by Jeff Anderson & Associates, in a related hearing immediately afterwards, Vasek, also named Doe 19, will ask the court to sanction the Diocese of Crookston for failing to produce Msgr. Grundhaus’ file in his case in 2015.

According to the advisory, Vasek disclosed the abuse to Crookston Diocese Bishop Michael J Hoeppner in 2009 or 2010 and the Diocese allegedly keep the abuse from the public including threatening his participation in the church and violating a 2015 court order in the case Doe 19 v. Diocese of Crookston, et al. Through Vasek’s lawsuit, he seeks to force the Diocese of Crookston to end their long-standing practice of concealment and protection of child abuse abusers.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Local man fighting Crookston Diocese to reveal past instances of sexual abuse

MINNESOTA
WDAZ

By Scott Cook on Sep 20, 2017

GRAND FORKS, ND (WDAZ)—A local man is fighting the Catholic Diocese of Crookston saying they have been concealing information about sexual abuse within the diocese.

On September 20, Ron Vasek and his attorney took part in a hearing at the Pennington County Courthouse.

Vasek said he and his son were threatened and intimidated by Bishop Michael Hoepner to keep quiet about sexual abuse that happened to him in the 1970s.

“The cover up has to end. There is no reason for that. None. This is 2017. They have had 30-40 years to clean this stuff up and they still aren’t doing it. Why? And that’s what the people want to know is why is this still continuing?” said Vasek.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.