Victims’ group seeks investigation into St. Louis archbishop

St. Louis Post-Dispatch

March 3, 2022

By Robert Patrick

An advocacy group on Thursday said they filed a complaint against St. Louis Archbishop Mitchell Rozanski over his handling of a priest accused in lawsuits of sexual abuse.

David Clohessy of Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, said the group filed a “lengthy, detailed” complaint with the Vatican office, commonly known as “Vos Estis,” that investigates abuse or cover-ups by bishops.

Clohessy said Rozanski should have suspended a De Soto priest, the Rev. Alexander Anderson, who was facing one lawsuit when he was sued again last month.

Clohessy said that Anderson has been accused five times. The archdiocese, in a statement in response to the most recent lawsuit, said other allegations were either retracted or shown to be false. 

Clohessy said church officials can encourage or discourage victims from coming forward, and were discouraging them by failing to act against Anderson.

Last month’s lawsuit, filed by Christian Hornbeck, said Anderson fondled Hornbeck in the late 1990s or early 2000s at St. Joseph’s Home for Boys in south St. Louis. The archdiocese said Anderson was not assigned there at the time.

Anderson, is now at St. Rose of Lima parish in De Soto.

Hornbeck, who now is married and works and lives in Georgia, in a Zoom call Thursday said he would like to discuss the allegations in an open forum with Rozanski.