Fr. Joseph Fertal

Order: SVD
Ordained: 1959
Status: Settled

Diocese: Diocese of San Bernardino CA

Working in the Philippines in 1989 when suspected of abuse. Returned to his order’s seminary in Riverside, CA, then assigned to parishes. Accused in 1995 of molesting a 16-year-old boy from a catechism class. Civil suit filed in 1996; later settled out of court. Criminal investigation dropped for lack of evidence. Forced by church officials to leave a CA retirement home in 2002 after it learned of his past history. In treatment several times. Added to Scranton diocese’s list in 12/2018. Living in Chicago at the time. Reportedly died in 2021. Included on the Society of the Divine Word Chicago Province and the Western Province’s lists of credibly accused. Noted to have been assigned in the Philippines 1960-1967, Techny IL 1967-1972, Philippines 1972-1989, California 1990-2004, Dittmer MO 2004-2016, Techny IL 2016-2021. Abuse occurred in Techny IL in 1968, Niles IL 1971, Scranton PA 1972 and Corona CA 1995. On the Archdiocese of Chicago’s list as of 4/5/2023. Included in the 5/23/2023 IL Attorney General’s Report, which notes at least two “reported survivors.”

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