Assignment Record – Bishop G. Patrick Ziemann

Summary of Case: Ordained for the Los Angeles archdiocese in 1967, Ziemann spent much of his career at Our Lady Queen of the Angels high school seminary where he served as teacher, spiritual director, vice-rector, and dean of studies. He was elevated to Auxiliary Bishop in 1987, then to Bishop of Santa Rosa in 1992. In 1999 a younger priest of the diocese accused Ziemann of coercing him into sex over a two year period, ending in 1998. Ziemann abruptly resigned, admitting to a sexual relationship with the priest, but denying coercing him. In 2002 a man accused Ziemann of sexually abusing him beginning in 1968, when the man was a sixth-grade altar boy, and continuing for almost twenty years. This accuser claimed that Ziemann began to pay him for sex when he was 17 years-old. Ziemann denied the allegations. Another man surfaced in the early 2000s with claims that Ziemann sexually abused him as an altar boy in the 1960s, and a third man in 2004 accused Ziemann of sexually assaulting him as a boy in the 1970s, on the grounds of Our Lady's high school seminary. After stepping down Ziemann spent some time in an east coast residential treatment program. In 2000 he settled into a 'life of prayer and study' at a Benedictine monastery in the Tucson diocese. Ziemann died in October 2009.

: April 29, 1967
Incardinated: Los Angeles
Appointed: Auxiliary Bishop Dec. 23, 1986
Appointed: Bishop of Santa Rosa July 14, 1992
Retired: July 1999
Died: Oct. 22, 2009


Start Stop Parish/Assignment Town/Accusations State Position Notes


Los Angeles archbishop was James Francis Aloysius McIntyre (1948-1970), followed by Timothy Manning (1970-1985)

1971 St. Matthias

Huntington Park

Ziemann was accused in a July 2002 lawsuit of sexually abusing a boy, beginning in 1968 when the accuser was a sixth grader and altar boy at St. Matthias, and continuing until Ziemann was appointed auxiliary bishop in 1987. Ziemann denied the allegations. Ziemann's accuser also said Ziemann started to pay him for sex at age 17, and that payments continued after the sexual encounters stopped, until Zeimann stepped down in 1999.

A second man accused Ziemann in the early 2000s of having sexually abused him when he was a St. Matthias altar boy in the 1960s. Ziemann denied the charges.

CA 3/3, 3/4 St. Matthias had a grade school with 420-389 students, and a high school with 328-363 students, all girls.
1971 1974 Holy Family Orange CA

4/4 In residence.

Holy Family had a school with 571-526 students.
1970 1973 Priests' Senate Los Angeles CA secretary 1971-1973  
1971 1974 Mater Dei High School Santa Ana CA religion teacher Mater Dei had 895-969 boys and 933-875 girls.
1976 1980 Placement Board Los Angeles CA    


Mannning was succeeded as Los Angeles archbishop by Roger Michael Mahony (1985-2011)

1987 Our Lady Queen of the Angels Seminary

San Fernando

Ziemann was accused in a 2004 lawsuit of sexual assault of a boy on the high school seminary's grounds in the 1970s.

CA spiritual director 1974-1979; teacher; vice-rector; dean of studies 1979-1987 This high school seminary had 85-155 students.
1987 1992 Auxilliary Bishop Los Angeles CA auxiliary bishop, Santa Barbara region

Ziemann was appointed Auxiliary Bishop Dec. 29, 1986, and ordained Feb. 23, 1987.

Ziemann has been criticized for ignoring reports of sexual abuse by priests during his tenure.

1987 1992 Vicar General Los Angeles CA    
1992 1999 Bishop

Santa Rosa



Ziemann was appointed Bishop of Santa Rosa in July, 1992.

He abruptly resigned in July 1999 after a priest of the diocese accused him in a lawsuit of sexually assaulting him over a two year period ending in 1998. Ziemann had previously removed the priest from a Ukiah parish for stealing; his accuser said Ziemann coerced him into sexual activity in exchange for the bishop's silence in regard to the reason for the priest's removal. Ziemann denied the allegations. Ziemann admitted to sex with the priest, but said it was consensual.

1999 2000         Ziemann spent time at a residential treatment program in the East.


Tucson bishop was Manuel Duran Moreno (1982-2003), who was replaced by Gerald Frederick Kicanas (2003-)

2009 Holy Trinity Monastery and Holy Family Convent St. David AZ life of prayer and study This is a Benedictine monastery.

Ziemann died Oct. 22, 2009.


Sources: Official Catholic Directory (New York: P.J. Kenedy and Sons, 1968-1999)

Bishop Ziemann Quits Resignation Stuns Close Associates, By Mike Geniella, Press Democrat, July 22, 1999
Bishop Admits Sex with Priest Ziemann: Affair Consensual, Not Coerced, By Bob Klose and Mike Geniella, Press Democrat, July 23, 1999
Archbishop: Ziemann in Dark on Hume Levada Accepts Bishop's Claim about Letter, By Mike Geniella, Press Democrat, August 8, 1999
Hume Captured Ziemann in Taped Conversation, By James W. Sweeney, Press Democrat, October 1, 1999
No Charges against Ziemann D.A., Police Cite Lack of Evidence against Former Bishop, Press Democrat, November 10, 1999
Hume to Get $535,000 in Settlement with SR Diocese, Priest's Accusations Forced Ziemann Out, By Mike Geniella, Press Democrat, April 25, 2000
Rebuilding Finances and Faith a Year after a Devastating Sex and Finance Scandal Broke, the Santa Rosa Diocese Is Clearly on the Road to Recovery, By Bob Klose, Press Democrat, July 23, 2000
Former SR Bishop Ziemann Accused of Abusing Altar Boy, Press Democrat, July 7, 2002
Ziemann Denies Sex Abuse of Ex-Altar Boy, By Mike Geniella and Guy Kovner, Press Democrat, July 9, 2002
Behind the Robes , Pondering the Secrets Cardinal Mahony Might Hold about the Catholic Sex Scandal, By Jeffrey Anderson
LA Weekly [Los Angeles CA] , Downloaded March 18, 2003
Bishop Bad Boy, By Ron Russell, San Francisco Weekly, March 19, 2003
Priests Colluded in Sex Abuse, Suit Claims, Close-knit fraternity of clergymen protected molesters, says lawsuit against L.A. archdiocese, By Jean Guccione and William Lobdell, Los Angeles Times, December 18, 2003
LA Archdiocesan Report, Feb. 14, 2004, page 3
John Roe 4 vs. Does, Cause No. 1156450, Superior Court of California, Aug. 27, 2004
Personnel Bile No. 5: The List, By Gustavo Arellano, OC Weekly, March 4, 2005
It's Likely There Are Thousands More Crime Victims of Pedophile Priests in LA, Considering Case #bc307934 Alone, By Kay Ebeling,
City of Angels, December 7, 2007 list of U.S. Bishops Accused of Abuse, April 14, 2008
Former Santa Rosa Catholic Bishop Gravely Ill, By Guy Kovner, The Press Democrat, September 28, 2009
G. Patrick Ziemann Dies at 68; Embattled Former Roman Catholic Bishop of Santa Rosa Diocese, By Duke Helfand, Los Angeles Times, October 22, 200
L.A. Times Database, April 20, 2006
Bishop G. Patrick Ziemann (1941 - 2009), Obituary, The Bakersfield Californian, Oct. 24, 2009

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 Ziemann'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 Nov. 15, 2012