Assignment Record – Rev. Kenneth G. LaVan

Summary of Case: Rev. Kenneth LaVan was ordained for the archdiocese of St. Paul in 1958. In the late 1980s two women alleged having been sexually abused by LaVan as teenagers, one of them in the early 1960s beginning when she was 12 years old, and until she was 17. LaVan was also known by the archdiocese to have had "boundary violation" issues with adult women. He was removed from all active ministry November 30, 2013, yet was not included on the archdiocese's list released December 5, 2013 of credibly accused priests. LaVan was included on the archdiocese's February 17, 2014 list of priests with "substantiated" claims.

February 23, 1958
Retired: 1998


Start Stop Parish/Assignment Town/Accusations State/Country Position Notes


St. Paul archbishop was William Otterwell Brady (1956-1961), followed by Leo Binz (1961-1975).

1964 St. Michael's

St. Paul

• In the late 1980s a woman accused LaVan of sexually abusing her from around 1960-1965, when she was 12 to 17 years old.

MN 3/3, 4/4 St. Michael's had a school with 528-547 students.
1964 1965 St. Anne's Minneapolis MN 2/4 St. Anne's had a school with 676 students.
1965 1970 St. Raphael's Crystal Village MN 2/3 St. Raphael's had a school with 1,010 - 685 students.


Binz was succeeded by John Robert Roach (1975-1995).

1983 Guardian Angels Oakdale/Lake Elmo MN 2/2 Administrator, 1/1  
1983 1985 St. Francis of Assisi Lake St. Croix Beach MN 1/1  
1985 1986 St. Thomas Aquinas St. Paul Park MN In residence. This assignment is per news sources. LaVan is not indexed in the 1986 Directory.
1986 1987 St. Richard's Richfield MN 1/1 St. Richard's had a school with 150 students.
1987 1988 St. Joseph's

Lino Lakes


MN 2/2 In a 2005 memo to Archbishop Flynn, archdiocesan Vicar General, Rev. Kevin McDonough wrote, "It embarrasses me to acknowledge once again a lapse of memory on my own part. Although I had dealt with LaVan for many years about his boundary violations with adult females, I had forgotten that there were two allegations in the late 1980s concerning sexual involvement with teen-aged girls."
1988 1989 Special Assignment/Chancery Pro Tem St. Paul MN    
1989 1990         LaVan is not indexed in the 1990 Directory.


Harry Joseph Flynn followed Roach as archbishop (1995-2008).

1998 St. Joseph's Lino Lakes MN 2/2 St. Joseph's had a C.C.D. program with 950-1390 students.
1998 1999         LaVan is not indexed in the 1999 Directory.
1999 2000 Retired Lino Lakes MN   LaVan's address was that of St. Joseph's in Lino Lakes.


John Clayton Nienstedt succeeded Flynn (2008-).

2013 Retired Oakdale MN   LaVan was quietly removed from all active ministry November 30, 2013. The archdiocese did not include LaVan on a list of "credibly accused" priests released December 5, 2013. He was included on a list released February 17, 2014 of priests with "substantiated" claims of sexual abuse against minors.


Sources: Official Catholic Directory (New York: P.J. Kenedy and Sons, 1959-2012)

Archdiocese of St Paul & Minneapolis Assignment Record for Kenneth LaVan, February 16, 2014.
Archdiocese of St Paul & Minneapolis List of Priests accused of Abuse of Minors, Feb. 17, 2014
Former Stillwater area priests added to list of those ‘credibly accused’ of sexual abuse, By Jonathan Young, February 17, 2014
MN- Victims challenge Twin Cities bishops, Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, February 18, 2014
Number of alleged sex abusers greater than church has revealed, By Madeleine Baran, Minnesota Public Radio, February 19, 2014
Accused priests: Who they are, where they’ve served, what’s alleged, Minnesota Public Radio, Feb. 20, 2014

Priests in a Parish: We use the following convention to show a priest's place among the clergy of a parish: 1/2 means that he is the first priest listed in the Official Catholic Directory (usually the pastor) and that there is a total of two priests at the parish. The shorthand 3/4 means that the priest is listed third on a four-priest roster. See our sample page from the Directory.

Note: The Official Catholic Directory aims to report the whereabouts of Catholic priests in the United States on January 1 of the Directory's publication year. Our working assumption is that a priest listed in the Directory for a given year was at the same assignment for part of the previous year as well. However, Kenedy and Sons will sometimes accept updates well into the year of publication. Diocesan clergy records are rarely available to correct this information. The Directory is also sometimes misleading or wrong. We have tried to create an accurate assignment record, given the source materials and their limitations. Assignment records are a work in progress and we are always improving the records that we post. Please email us with new information and corrections.

This assignment record collates LaVan's career history as it is represented in the Official Catholic Directory with allegations as reported in the media. We make no representation regarding the truth of the allegation we report, and we remind our readers that the U.S. legal system presumes that a person accused of or charged with a crime is innocent until proven guilty. Similarly, individuals who may be defendants in civil actions are presumed not to be liable for such claims unless a plaintiff proves otherwise. Admissions of guilt or liability are not typically a part of civil or private settlements. For more information, see our posting policy.

This assignment record was last updated on March 3, 2014.