Jeff Anderson and Associates
June 22, 2023
By Trusha Goffe
Names of Predator Priests NOT Currently on Credibly Accused Catholic Church Lists
‘How many other abusive clerics are out there?’ victims & advocates ask
SNAP Reacts: ‘Archdiocese gets info on these offenders but keeps it secret’
At a sidewalk news conference, clergy sex abuse victims and their advocates will disclose the names of 30+ publicly accused abusive clerics who are, or were, in Illinois but are NOT in the Illinois Attorney General Catholic abuse report that ‘outed’ more than 450 predator priests a month ago.
A dozen of these clerics now live in Illinois, most with little or no supervision or monitoring, and may still pose a threat to children, victims and advocates say. For the first time ever, the groups are also launching Facebook ads, targeted to families who live near these predators, warning parents to keep their kids away from these men.
Thursday, June 21 at 1:00 pm (a month after the AG’s 700-page abuse report was released)
Outside the headquarters of a Catholic religious order known as the Servites, 3121 W. Jackson Blvd. (near the corner of S. Albany)
Two-three clergy abuse survivors, their attorneys and the former national director of a support group called SNAP (the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests)
1. Although a recent Illinois Attorney General report ‘outed’ 451 predator priests, clergy sex abuse victims and their advocates have discovered and will disclose the names of 30+ other publicly accused abusive clerics who are, or were, in Illinois but are missing from the report.
For the first time ever, the groups are also launching Facebook ads, targeted to families who live near these predators, warning parents to keep their kids away from these men. They will provide and hold large posters showing the actual ads.
2. One of the still-living predators is an admitted child molester, Fr. John M. Huels, who once headed a Chicago-based Catholic religious order called the Servites. At least two men have said he abused them as minors, including at least one who currently lives in Chicago.
Fr. Huels was accused of abuse in 2002. But 16 years later, he was still a priest, a professor and a dean at a Catholic college.
SNAP considers Fr. Huels potentially dangerous because he’s well-educated, well-spoken and may have powerful church allies, having run a religious order and given his success at staying on the job and getting new jobs even after having been publicly accused of abuse. At least two other Servite predator priests worked in Chicago: Fr. Philip Scherer and Fr. Andrew Ronan.
SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) wants ALL religious orders (Jesuits, Benedictines, Servites, etc.) to post on their own websites the names of – and information about – ALL credibly accused child-molesting clerics, especially those who are NOT in Raoul’s report and those who are alive and may still pose a danger to children. Roughly 1/3 of all Catholic clerics in Chicago belong to religious orders.
3.Advocates and victims are also calling on public officials to a) enact legislative reforms that will help prevent child sex crimes in the future and b) keep prodding bishops to ‘come clean’ with the names of and information about all abusers. Additionally, they want Archdiocese of Chicago’s Cardinal Blasé Cupich to “immediately disclose and post the names of every child molesting cleric who is or was in the archdiocese, whether living or dead, starting with those who are still alive.”
Attorney General Raoul says that Illinois bishops are essentially still protecting at least 149 credibly accused child molesting religious order clerics by refusing to list them on diocesan ‘credibly accused’ predator lists.
Advocates and attorneys want bishops to immediately “stop splitting hairs” add these 149 names to their online ‘credibly accused’ lists.
All alleged perpetrators identified in this press briefing have been publicly identified in media-related sources, or official lists released by archdioceses, dioceses, or religious orders accusing them of child sexual abuse. The claims against these individuals may not have been thoroughly evaluated in a civil or criminal court. The allegations should not be considered proven or substantiated in a court of law. All individuals should be considered innocent until proven guilty.