Archdiocese suspends pastor of St. Peter Claver after he is accused of child rape in lawsuit


January 27, 2021

By Ramon Antonio Vargas

The Archdiocese of New Orleans on Wednesday suspended the pastor of St. Peter Claver Catholic Church in Treme after he was accused in a lawsuit of raping a 10-year-old boy while hearing his confession during an out-of-state retreat in 2008.

The Rev. John Asare-Dankwah’s suspension will remain in effect until church authorities can complete an investigation into the allegations, archdiocesan officials said in a statement.

The events outlined in the nine-page lawsuit, filed in Orleans Parish Civil District Court, are not purported to have occurred at St. Peter Claver, the historic church purchased in 1920 by the Josephite Fathers to serve the area’s African American population.

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