APG Media of Wisconsin [Ashland WI]
November 22, 2022
Most Rev. James P. Powers, Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Superior, today released the list of abusive clergy who have substantiated allegations of sexual abuse of a minor. This list of names is the result of three separate clergy file reviews, including one by a private independent security consulting firm, more than a year of meetings, multiple sessions with the Diocesan Review Board (lay people with various life experiences), and much prayer and discernment.
The complete list can be found on the Diocesan website at catholicdos.org/abusive-clergy-list.
Bishop Powers sincerely acknowledges the sinful harms of the past, apologizes on behalf of the local Church, and prays for the healing of all victims-survivors and their affected families and friends.
“I wish we could go back in time and undo all of the hurt and pain, the sins of the past. But we cannot,” said Bishop Powers. “What we can do is learn from the past and do everything in our power to never repeat the abuse. I firmly believe that the Diocese of Superior is clearly on the right path in protecting our children.”
The Diocese of Superior remains committed to the protection of minors. Its policies include immediately reporting an abuse allegation to local law enforcement and placing the clergy on administrative leave pending an investigation.
The Diocese would pursue permanent removal from ministry any clergy who has a substantiated allegation of abuse of a minor. In addition, the Diocese requires all clergy, employees, and volunteers in all parishes, schools, and diocesan offices to complete mandatory background checks and training on keeping children safe.
Through the efforts and guidance of the Diocesan Safe Environment Office, more than 15,000 adults – church employees and volunteers – have been background-checked and trained to recognize abuse. This number includes some 300 clergy.
Since the Diocese of Superior was established on May 3, 1905 by Pope Pius X, several hundred priests have served the parish communities within its territory. Among the total number of priests who have served, 23 priests have had a substantiated allegation of the sexual abuse of a minor made against them. Of this number, 20 are deceased, and it should be noted that there is no priest on the list that is currently active in ministry.
Victims of clergy abuse are strongly urged to report their abuse to local law enforcement and Kathy Drinkwine, Diocesan Coordinator of Assistance at (cell) 715-718-1110, (office) 715-394-0216, and (email) firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Diocese of Superior has 103 parishes and 14 Catholic schools and over 23,000 households. It encompasses the City of Superior and the Counties of Ashland, Barron, Bayfield, Burnett, Douglas, Iron, Lincoln, Oneida, Price, Polk, Rusk, Sawyer, St. Croix, Taylor, Vilas, and Washburn in northern Wisconsin. Its episcopal see (administrative center of operations) is Superior, and the Cathedral of Christ the King in Superior is its mother church.