SNAP - Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests [St. Louis MO]
July 15, 2021
A long-dead Catholic clergyman from the Diocese of Burlington has been accused of sexually abusing a young boy in the 1960s. We commend the victim, who is now in his 60’s and wishes to remain anonymous, for having the courage and strength to come forward after carrying this heavy burden for so long.
Fr. Roger Carlin died in 1980. The accusations stem from between 1966 and 1967 when the survivor was 9 years of age. The cleric was assigned to St. John Vianney Church in South Burlington at the time.
The Burlington Diocese claimed that this was the first allegation it has received concerning Fr. Carlin. The Diocese further said, “On receipt of the allegation, Fr. Carlin’s diocesan file was reviewed by a member of the independent review committee which confirms there is no prior allegation as to Fr. Carlin.”
However, Fr. Carlin was apparently transferred eight times during his career. Survivor advocate Bob Hoatson pointed out that “13 years of his 20 years as a priest [was] either outside the diocese, on sick leave, in Canada. So somewhere along the line something happened.”
We share Bob’s belief that the frequent transfers and sick leaves are suspicious, and we echo his request for the Diocese of Burlington to release all the personnel files related to Fr. Carlin.
By our account, this marks the 27th Catholic priest accused of abuse this year in the United States, and the 50th abusive clergyman tied to the Diocese of Burlington, 10 more than the 40 acknowledged by the Diocese.
We encourage anyone who has suffered sexual abuse or who has information regarding abuse to report to law enforcement. Secular investigations have proven to consistently reveal more information than what any Catholic official is willing to volunteer.