A Global Accounting

Note regarding the criminal charges that have been filed against ex-cardinal Theodore McCarrick: He becomes the first U.S. cardinal and only the second U.S. bishop to be criminally charged with child sexual abuse. In addition to his alleged abuse of seminarians and priests, the ex-cardinal is accused of sexually abusing at least 13 children. See our detailed summary of the McCarrick case below.

As of 9/10/2021, BishopAccountability.org has identified 90 Catholic bishops worldwide accused publicly of sexual crimes against children and 42 Catholic bishops worldwide who have been accused publicly of sexual wrongdoing against adults only.

The names of those accused of abusing minors are marked in red; those with names in black are accused of sexual abuse/sexual misconduct with individuals age 18 or older only.

Until the 2018 revelations of numerous abuses by former cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the problem of bishops and major superiors who abuse had received little scrutiny. Yet a sexually abusive bishop or superior is exceptionally dangerous. His management of priests is skewed toward protecting his secret, beginning with the character of the men he accepts to the seminary and the quality of their formation.  When one of his priests is accused of sexual abuse, a bishop who is also an offender is unlikely to administer punishment or contact law enforcement.  He is, inevitably, an enabler of other sexual criminals, harming not only his own victims, but those who are raped or assaulted by the abusive clerics to whom he gives safe harbor.

In the Catholic church, “sexual corruption is conferred from the top down – from men in power,” wrote celibacy scholar Richard Sipe. Bishops who sexually abuse seminarians, as McCarrick is canonically convicted of doing, and as Bishop Anthony J. O’Connell admitted doing, may establish what Sipe called “a genealogy of abuse,” setting up “a pattern of institutional secrecy.”

Despite the extensive harm done by abusive church leaders, few have been severely disciplined. Only seven have been laicized: Fernando Armindo Lugo Méndez of Paraguay (2008), Raymond J. Lahey of Canada (2012), Gabino Miranda Melgarejo of Peru (2013), Jósef Wesołowski of Poland (2014), Francisco José Cox Huneeus of Chile (2018), Marco Antonio Órdenes Fernández of Chile (2018), and Theodore McCarrick of the United States (2019).

All of the remaining bishops named below, even those found guilty under canon law, have been allowed to retain the title of bishop and to be called emeritus, a status that confers continued prestige and power. According to a 2008 document by the Congregation for Bishops, when a bishop becomes emeritus, he merely is beginning ‘a new phase of his ministry.’ Though relieved of administrative duties, he retains his membership in the college of bishops and continues to ‘collaborate in the governance of the church.’

Most abusive bishops have escaped accountability in the secular realm too, due mainly to restrictive statutes of limitations. For instance, out of the 47 U.S. bishops publicly accused of child sexual abuse, only two — Bishop Thomas Dupre and former cardinal Theodore McCarrick — have been criminally indicted or charged.

Argentina | Australia | Austria | Belgium | Brazil | Canada | Chile | Dominican Republic | England | France | French Guiana Germany | Guam | Honduras | Iceland | India | Ireland | Italy | Jamaica | Kenya | Liberia | Netherlands | New Zealand | Nigeria | Norway | Paraguay | Peru | Philippines | Poland | Portugal | Puerto Rico | Scotland | South Africa | Switzerland | United States | Uruguay | Wales

Apuron | Arzube | Bactol | Bevilacqua | Bluyssen | Bransfield | Brown | Brungardt | Burke | Camacho | Carraro | Casey | Contreras Molina | Corrêa | Cowley | Cox Huneeus | Davis | di Falco Léandri | Denning | DiMarzio | Duarte García de Cortázar | Dimmerling | Dozier | Dudley | Dupre | Estabrook | Fernández Torres | Ferrario | Fisher | Flores | Gelineau | Gerety | Gijsen | Groër | Grosz | GulbinowiczGuglielmone | Gutierrez | Harrington | Hart | Hubbard | Janssen | Jenik | Lahey | LaRocque | Libasci | Livieres Banks | Lyons | Magee | McCarrick | McGann | McQuaid | Medeiros | Miranda Melgarejo | Mixa | Müller | Mulloy | Murphy-O’Connor | Niënhaus | Nienstedt | O’Brien, Thomas | O’Connell | O’Connor,Hubert | Órdenes Fernández | Orsmond | Pagotto | Pell | Piñera Carvallo | Rausch | Rueger | Ryan | Salazar | Sansaricq | Schilder | Skylstad | Soens | Storni | Sullivan, James | Sullivan, Joseph M. | Sullivan, Joseph V. | Symons | Szkodoń | ter Schure | Vangheluwe | VaughanWard | Weldon | Wesołowski | Williams | Ziemann

Antonazzo | Barbosa Da Silveira | Abanto Guzmán | Bacani | Bär | Brom | Bennett | Comiskey | Conry | Drennan | Eisenbach | Ferreira da Silva | Karnley | Knight | Lafont | Lugo Méndez | Lynch | Maccarone | Marino | McCarthy | Moreira Azevedo | Mulakkal | O’Brien, Keith | Paetz | Pellegrín Barrera | Pineda Fasquelle | Tejeda Rosario | Sanchez | Sarto | Saunders | Spellman | Toohey | Uriona | Ventura | Vogel | Weakland | Welsh | WilliamWright | Yalung | Zanchetta | Zeigler


Bishop Juan Carlos Maccarone
Auxiliary bishop of Lomas de Zamora 1993-1996; bishop of Chascomús 1996-1999; bishop of Santiago del Estero 1999-2005. Resigned in 2005, age 64, per canon 401.2 after video surfaced of him having sex with 23-year-old man. Remained in ministry. Seen 2010 saying Confirmation Mass for teenagers. Santiago del Estero bishop emeritus. Died March 2015.

Archbishop Edgardo G. Storni
Appointed archbishop of Santa Fe de la Vera Cruz 1984. Investigated by church in 1994 for alleged abuse of dozens of seminarians. Resigned October 2002, age 66, per canon 401.2 after reports he abused dozens of young men and boys. Some of the alleged victims were as young as 15 or 16. Convicted 2009 and sentenced to eight years in prison for sexual abuse of a seminarian who was reportedly age 18. Allowed to serve sentence at home, because of his age. Appeals court overturned sentence 2011, ordering lower court to re-sentence. Before this could occur, Storni died, on 2/20/2012. He retained title of Santa Fe de la Vera Cruz archbishop emeritus until his death. In 2016, a civil court ordered the church to pay $50,000 (756,000 pesos) in moral damages to victim whose charges had resulted in conviction. This ruling was reversed on appeal in 2018, with the higher court finding that the incidents were prescribed.

Bishop Adolfo A. Uriona, F.D.P.
Bishop of Añatuya 2004-2014; bishop of Villa de la Concepción del Río Cuarto 2014-Present. Arrested 2006 after a 24-year-old woman accused him of groping her during a bus ride. Denied the charge. Case dismissed. Met with Pope Francis 1/23/2014. Appointed bishop of Villa de la Concepción in late 2014.

Bishop Gustavo Óscar Zanchetta
Named bishop of Orán 7/23/2013. This was one of first episcopal appointments by Pope Francis, with whom Zanchetta has said he has ‘a very close relationship.’ Lay leaders in Zanchetta’s prior diocese of Quilmes publicly protested the appointment, citing his alleged financial misdealings and abuse of power. Zanchetta abruptly resigned Orán post 7/29/2017, leaving the diocese “in a matter of hours,” skipping the customary farewell Mass. In a brief public letter, Zanchetta attributed his hasty departure to ill health, but local media reported Zanchetta’s alleged financial mismanagement and harsh treatment of respected priests. On 12/19/2017, Vatican announced Zanchetta’s appointment to APSA, the office that manages the Holy See’s 5000+ properties and other financial holdings. Zanchetta’s position, ‘assessor,’ hadn’t existed previously; it was created for him, reportedly upon orders from the Pope. On 12/28/2018, the Salta newspaper El Tribuno reported Zanchetta’s alleged sexual abuse of seminarians. Vatican announced 1/4/2019 that Zanchetta would step down while allegations were investigated; spokesperson said that allegations had first come to their attention in the fall of 2018. This was contradicted by an El Tribuno report, that Orán priests had informed papal nuncio Emil Tscherrig in 2015 of the bishop’s alleged sexual abuse of seminarians. In 1/20/2019 AP report, former Orán vicar general said Pope had met with Zanchetta in both 2015 and 2017 to discuss allegations. Vatican again denied that there had been prior accusations of sexual abuse. In June 2019, shortly after the Pope told a Mexican journalist that he had authorized a canonical trial of Zanchetta, the Salta public prosecutor charged the bishop with “aggravated sexual abuse” of two seminarians between 2016 and 2017. He denies the charges. In June 2020, AP reported that Zanchetta had resumed work in the Vatican’s APSA office, despite the still-pending criminal investigation by Argentine judicial authorities. Same AP report quoted Zanchetta’s lawyer as saying that the Vatican’s investigation had wrapped up in December 2019.


Bishop Max L. Davis
Bishop of Australia, Military 2003-Present. Criminally charged June 2014 with 1969 sexual abuse of child in New Norcia, prior to ordination. Denied the charge. Stepped aside as Military bishop while court case active. Tried in Perth court February 2016 on charges of “indecent dealings” with five boys, ages 13-15, between 1969-1972. Jury found him not guilty.

Cardinal George Pell
Acquitted 4/7/2020 of sexual offenses against two 13-year-old boys in late 1996 and early 1997.  Pell had been convicted of the crimes on 12/11/ 2018, and in March 2019, he had been sentenced to six years in prison. [See Judge Peter Kidd’s Reasons for Sentence.] In early June 2019, he appealed the verdict to the Melbourne Court of Appeals, a division of the Supreme Court of Victoria. On 8/21/2019, the three-justice appeal panel announced it had dismissed Pell’s appeal 2 to 1. [See the Melbourne Court of Appeal’s Summary of Judgment and Reasons for Judgment, which includes the dissenting judge’s opinion, beginning on page 121.]

The cardinal appealed the ruling to Australia’s High Court, his defense counsel arguing that the appeal court’s judgment had “reversed the onus of proof.” In a brief but complicated ruling on 11/13/ 2019, a two-justice High Court panel neither granted nor denied Pell’s application for appeal. Instead, it ordered that both Pell’s request for appeal and his substantive argument for appeal be heard in a special sitting of the full bench.

In January and February 2020, both Pell’s defense counsel and prosecutors submitted written arguments to the High Court. The High Court’s full bench of seven justices held its hearing on 3/11 and 3/12/2020, with Pell’s counsel presenting its case first, followed by the prosecutor’s argument for retaining the appeal court’s ruling. The High Court then asked for further written submissions from both sides.

On 4/7/2020, the High Court issued its judgment. It unanimously allowed the appeal and “ordered that the convictions be quashed and that verdicts of acquittal be entered in their place.” Granting that the jury had assessed the complainant’s evidence “as thoroughly credible and reliable,” the Court wrote, “the evidence of the opportunity witnesses nonetheless required the jury, acting rationally, to have entertained a reasonable doubt” as to Pell’s guilt. Pell was immediately freed from prison. A brief Vatican communique ‘welcomed’ the High Court decision. It did not say whether it would now launch an internal investigation of the cardinal.

While the High Court ruling ends the criminal case involving the two teen choirboys, it’s possible the allegations will be considered again in civil courts. The father of choirboy “R,” who died of a heroin dose in 2014, said he intends to sue Pell. This is expected to be one of several lawsuits that would be resolved in civil courts, where the standard of proof is lower. 

In addition to the alleged crimes for which he was put on trial, Pell has been accused of child sexual abuse by at least five other men. One man reported his complaint to the church in 2002. Two others, Lyndon Monument and Damian Dignan, told Victoria police in 2015 or 2016 that then-Father Pell repeatedly molested them in a Ballarat swimming pool in the 1970s. On 4/2/2020, two other alleged victims appeared in an Australian Broadcasting Corporation TV program. Both say they were molested by Pell in the 1970s, when they were growing up in Ballarat’s Nazareth House, an orphanage run by the Sisters of Nazareth.

For a detailed chronology of the abuse allegations against the cardinal, and of the police investigation and legal proceedings involving the alleged incidents of 1996 and 1997, see: Timeline: Allegations of Child Sexual Abuse against Cardinal George Pell

Bishop Christopher A. Saunders 
Appointed bishop of Broome diocese 1995. On 3/11/2020, a TV station broke the story that Western Australia police had launched a criminal investigation of Saunders 18 months earlier for the alleged sexual assault of “two young aboriginal men.” Citing police-imposed restrictions on media coverage, the report did not say whether the complainants were minors at the time of the alleged abuses. Within hours of the Channel 7 broadcast, the metropolitan archbishop, Timothy Costelloe of Perth, issued a communique saying that the Holy See had sent in an investigator to Broome and that Saunders, age 70, had “voluntarily” stepped aside from running the diocese.(Saunders stepped aside 3/9/2020, according to the ABC.) Saunders told Channel 7 that he had never abused anyone. In July 2020, the ABC reported it had obtained emails and other documents showing that church authorities knew of allegations against Saunders as early as April 2019.

Bishop Christopher H. Toohey
Bishop of Wilcannia-Forbes diocese 2001-2009. Resigned suddenly 6/9/2009, age 57, per canon 401.2, supposedly for “health and personal reasons.” On 4/28/2011, Toohey published a vague admission of wrongdoing: “My behaviour … with some young adults in my pastoral care … was not consistent with that required of a good person.” As a result, he said, would not be returning to active ministry. According to church spokesperson, Toohey’s admission was a condition of an agreement with a young woman who had filed complaint with Towards Healing in 2008 or 2009. He reportedly had improper relationships with “a number of young women.” Toohey remains bishop emeritus.


Cardinal Hans H. Groër, O.S.B.
Accused publicly 1995 of abusing boys and young monks. Retired as archbishop soon after, age 75, with JP II saying Christ too faced “unjust accusations.” Named head of priory 1996. Removal announced early 1998, after more victims surfaced. Schönborn and 3 others confirmed Groër’s abuses February 1998. Resigned April 1998 from all duties. Remained cardinal and Vienna archbishop emeritus. Some estimated 2,000 victims. Died 2003.


Bishop Roger J. Vangheluwe
Resigned 2010, age 73, per canon 401.2 after admitting to sexual abuse of boy, later revealed to be his nephew. Sent by Vatican to monastery in France for “spiritual and psychological treatment.” Admitted on television in April 2011 to abuse of two nephews, one beginning at age 5, over 13-year period in 1970s and ’80s. Left monastery amidst public outcry three days after TV appearance. Not prosecuted due to expired statute of limitations. Current whereabouts unknown. Brugge {Bruges} bishop emeritus.


Archbishop Alberto Taveira Corrêa
Archbishop of Belém 2010-Present. In December 2020 and early January 2021, four former seminarians went public with allegations of sexual harassment and sexual abuse by Corrêa. Alleged incidents occurred between 2010 and 2014 when victims were ages 15 to 20. All were students at Seminario St. Pio X (St. Pius X seminary) in Ananindeua, a city in northern Brazil. In June 2019, two priests had reported the allegations to a Brazilian bishop, and in August 2020, the four victims had notified criminal authorities. The church then did an apostolic investigation, which concluded in early December 2020. As of January 2021, both criminal and church probes were ongoing, and Archbishop Taveira remained in his position. He denies all allegations.  

Bishop Tomé Ferreira da Silva
Auxiliary bishop of São Paulo, 2005-2012; bishop of São José do Rio Preto, 2012-2021News in August 2018 of investigation by papal envoy into Ferreira’s suspected sexual harassment of a young man. Also accused of protecting abusive priests, including one who was arrested in 2017 for possessing pornographic images of children. Ferreira resigned 8/18/2021 at age 60, several days after a video showing him masturbating was circulated on social media.

Archbishop Aldo di Cillo Pagotto
Resigned 2016, age 66, per canon 401.2, after Vatican investigation into charges he accepted into the archdiocese priests and seminiarians rejected by other dioceses for suspected pedophilia. In a public letter explaining his resignation, Pagotto said his welcome of problem priests was an act of mercy. In January 2019, civil court ordered Paraíba archdiocese to pay victims 12 million Brazilian real or US $3,229,740. The victims had been sexually abused as children or young adults by Pagotto and four Paraíba priests. Pagotto remained Paraíba archbishop emeritus until his death on 4/14/2020.

Bishop Antônio Sarto, S.D.B.
Bishop of Barra do Garças 1982-2001. Priest went public in 2005 ISTOÉ feature, accusing Sarto of sexual harassment beginning when the priest was ordained in 1988. Priest reported Sarto to ecclesiastical tribunal and then, in 2003, to Vatican.  Nothing was done. Sarto died September 2008. Bishops’ conference praised him, saying he had served with a ‘pastor’s zeal and father’s love.’


Bishop John S. Knight
Accused 2000 of sexual misconduct with person over age 16. Not known if alleged victim was under age 18. Church deemed allegation “substantive enough to warrant a full examination.” Removed from ministry during Church investigation. Resigned same year, age 58. Toronto auxiliary bishop emeritus.

Bishop Raymond J. Lahey
in 2009 for possession of child abuse images. Resigned as Antigonish bishop in 2009 per canon 401.2, age 69. Pled guilty in 2011. Sentenced in 2012 but given time served. Laicized in 2012.

Bishop Eugène P. LaRocque
Retired 2002. Investigated late 1990s-early 2000s by police probing sexual abuse in Cornwall. Per LaRocque, original allegations date to 1961. Not charged. Accused 2005 of 1970s sexual abuse of altar boy. Denied all accusations. Remained Alexandria-Cornwall bishop emeritus until his death in December 2018.

Bishop Hubert P. O’Connor, O.M.I.
Bishop of Whitehorse, Yukon, 1971-1986; bishop of Prince George, British Columbia, 1986-1991. Resigned 1991, age 63, after being charged with sex crimes that took place between 1964 and 1967, when O’Connor was a priest and the principal of the St. Joseph’s residential school near Williams Lake, British Columbia. He was charged with two counts of rape and two counts of indecent assault. The victims were four young aboriginal women, each a former student. At the time they were abused, all were reportedly older than 18 and employed at the school. Convicted 1996 of one charge of indecent assault of one woman and one charge of raping another woman. Sentenced to 2½ years in prison. Released on bail after serving 6 months. Conviction on indecent assault was changed to acquittal in 1998. Remained Prince George bishop emeritus. Died 2007. Accused 4/9/2020 in a claim filed with the Yukon Supreme Court of sexually assaulting a 15-year-old boy in 1985, when O’Connor was Whitehorse bishop.

Archbishop Luigi Ventura * 
Italian. Joined Vatican diplomatic corps 1978, working in Brazil, Bolivia and UK. Appointed papal nuncio 1995, subsequently serving in: Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, and Niger (1995-1999); Chile (1999-2001); Canada (2001-2009); and France (20092019). News February 2019 of preliminary sexual assault investigation by French prosecutors: Parisian city employee in his 30s alleged that Ventura had touched him ‘insistently‘ on the buttocks three times during a ceremony at Paris city hall the previous month. LaCroix reported several similar accounts from other young men. On 2/22/2019, similar incident reported to Vatican embassy in Ottawa; alleged incident took place at a Quebec shrine in 2008, when complainant was 32 and Ventura was papal nuncio to Canada. In July 2019, following more public allegations, Vatican waived Ventura’s diplomatic immunity, opening possibility of criminal trial in France. Six alleged victims had come forward at this point; one was an 18-year-old seminarian at the time of the alleged abuse. Vatican announced Pope’s acceptance of Ventura’s resignation on 12/17/2019, a week after Ventura reached the standard retirement age of 75. Convicted 12/16/2020 of placing his hands on the buttocks of five men. Given an eight-month suspended prison sentence and ordered to pay “13,000 euros ($15,800) to four of the men and 9,000 euros ($10,900) in legal costs.”


Bishop Cristián E. Contreras Molina, O. de M.
Pope Francis accepted the resignation of Bishop Contreras at age 71 in September 2018. Contreras, who formerly led the diocese of San Felipe, remains a bishop emeritus. Chilean prosecutors are investigating claims that Contreras repeatedly abused a minor in the bishop’s house a decade ago. He denied this accusation in September 2018, saying “I feel absolutely free of any suggestion of any attitude of abuse or something related to sex.” He was previously investigated for alleged sexual abuse of a 15-year-old. In 2013, the Vatican sent two priests to investigate but no sanctions were imposed.

Archbishop Francisco José Cox Huneeus, P. Schönstatt
Laicized by Pope Francis in October 2018 at age 84.  Cox was under investigation for abusing minors in Chile and Germany. Cox resigned as the archbishop of La Serena in 1997 at age 63. At the time, the Church cited mental health reasons. In 2002, abuse rumors appeared in local newspapers, and the Church acknowledged Cox had been removed from ministry due to “improper conduct.” Later that year, Cox released a statement asking forgiveness “for this dark side that is opposed to the Gospel.” Died 8/12/2020 without ever facing trial.

Bishop Gonzalo Duarte García de Cortázar, SS.CC.
Bishop emeritus of Valparaíso. Accused of covering up abuse by other clergy members as well as committing abuse himself. Pope Francis accepted his resignation in June 2018 at age 75, the standard retirement age for bishops. Duarte served as Chile’s military bishop between 1995 and 1999 and is expected to testify in November 2018 about alleged abuses by Air Force chaplain Pedro Quiroz and how the accusations were handled. In addition, Duarte himself was accused in 2014 of abusing adolescent seminarians.

Former Bishop Marco Antonio Órdenes Fernández
Former Bishop Órdenes was expelled from the priesthood at age 53 by Pope Francis in October 2018. He had resigned as the Bishop of Iquique in 2012 during a Vatican investigation into accusations he molested an altar boy years earlier, but remained archbishop emeritus until he was laicized. Órdenes acknowledged “an imprudent act” with his accuser, but said the youth was 17 and thus not underage at the time. His accuser had said the abuse began when he was 15. He said at first it was forced, but they later became lovers. In January 2018, sex crimes charges against Órdenes were dismissed after an appeals court ruled there was not enough evidence.

Bishop Carlos Eduardo Pellegrín Barrera, S.V.D.
Bishop of San Bartolomé de Chillán diocese 2006-2018. News May 2011 that bishop was being investigated by prosecutors for alleged sexual abuse when he was rector of the Colegio Verbo Divino. Prosecutors dropped case February 2012 due to lack of evidence. Offered resignation to Pope 5/21/2018, along with the entire Chilean episcopacy. Investigated by Chile’s Public Ministry for allegations of sexual abuse that were reported in early August 2018. It’s not clear from public information whether the alleged victim was a minor or adult. Pellegrín’s was one of only seven resignations that Pope ultimately accepted. He left office 9/21/2018 at age 60, one week after Chillan diocesan headquarters were raided by prosecutors. While indicating that he would fight the legal charges, he asked for forgiveness “for the times when I was not at the height of what my responsibility as a pastor requires.” In February 2021, Pellegrín notified his fellow bishops that the Public Ministry had acquitted him of criminal wrongdoing.

Archbishop Bernardino Piñera Carvallo
Archbishop of La Serena 1983-1990. Retired 1990, age 75. Announcement by Chilean apostolic nuncio 8/20/2019 that Piñera, uncle of Chilean president Sebastián Piñera, is being investigated by Vatican for alleged sexual abuse of a minor “more than 50 years ago.” Piñera denies the allegation.


Bishop Príamo Pericles Tejeda Rosario
Resigned as Baní bishop in 1997, age 63, then worked as priest in Venice FL. Accused in 2007 of sexual assault of a 42-year-old man for 11 years. Venice diocese removed faculties. Not charged. Baní bishop emeritus.

Archbishop Józef Wesołowski *
Polish. Resigned as papal nuncio to Dominican Republic August 2013 and was secretly recalled to Vatican, just days before DR news media exposed his alleged sex assaults of children on Santo Domingo waterfront. Church officials did not inform DR law enforcement. Prosecution sought by both DR and Poland. Vatican reportedly rebuffed extradition request by Poland January 2014. Laicization announced June 2014, four days after DR bishop tweeted about seeing Wesołowski strolling in Rome. Diplomatic immunity removed August 2014, day after NY Times exposé. Put under house arrest in Vatican City State September 2014. Found with 100,000+ child abuse images on his laptop and Vatican-owned computer. Released from house arrest after 60 days; free to move around Vatican City State beginning late November 2014. Hospitalized night before his July 2015 trial in VCS, causing trial to be indefinitely postponed. Released from hospital one week later, and freed to walk around Vatican City, according to BBC. Found dead in his Vatican apartment August 28, 2015. Trial never resumed.


Bishop Kieran Thomas Conry
Bishop of Arundel and Brighton 2001-2014. Resigned September 2014 after publicly admitting to sexual relationship with woman six years earlier. Admission was prompted by threatened lawsuit by husband of another woman with whom Conry allegedly also had an affair. Conry denied that the relationship with second woman was sexual. Resignation accepted by pope 10/4/2014. Conry remains bishop emeritus.

Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor
Died 2017. Accused publicly September 2018, via a LifeSiteNews article and letter from former papal nuncio Archbishop Carlo Viganò. LifeSite alleged that in June 2013, Pope Francis ordered then-CDF Prefect Gerhard Müller to drop investigation of child sexual abuse by Murphy-O’Connor. Müller confirmed the story. According to National Catholic Register, a woman first reported Murphy-O’Connor to English church authorities in December 2008. She was age 13-14 in the late 1960s, when Murphy-O’Connor, still a priest, allegedly joined convicted offender Fr. Michael Hill and other priests in abusing her. Police interviewed Murphy-O’Connor in April 2009 and, according to The Tablet, decided not to pursue case. English bishops reported allegation to CDF in 2011; The Tablet says then-CDF Prefect Levada ruled “there was no case to answer.” Canonical case was still formally open when Müller took over CDF in 2012; it’s not known when or if Vatican closed it. Murphy-O’Connor, who retired as Westminster archbishop in 2009 at age 76, remained archbishop emeritus until his death on 9/1/2017. In November 2019, two English bishops testified to Britain’s Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) that they recently had decided against publicly affirming the credibility of Murphy-O’Connor’s accuser after a church communications director conveyed Cardinal Vincent Nichols’ concern that their affirmations would bolster anti-Francis efforts by LifeSite, Viganò, and others. Cardinal Nichols disputed this interpretation. He also said the alleged abuse by Murphy-O’Connor was not possible for logistical reasons; see Nichols’ written submission to IICSA and the transcript of his 11/7/2019 testimony to IICSA.


Bishop Jean-Michel di Falco Léandri
Auxiliary bishop of Paris 1997-2003; auxiliary bishop of Gap 2003; bishop of Gap 2003-2017. News in 2002 of 2001 criminal complaint against di Falco. Man said he was age 12 in 1972 when alleged sexual assaults by di Falco began. Case dropped 2002 because of prescription, and di Falco promoted to bishop of Gap in 2003. In 2016, same complainant filed civil case, suing di Falco for damages. He was supported by second alleged di Falco victim. Di Falco stepped down as Gap bishop in 2017, at standard retirement age of 75. Court ruled in his favor in March 2018, saying filing period had expired. Victim ordered to pay bishop’s legal fees. Di Falco denies any wrongdoing. He remains Gap bishop emeritus.

Archbishop Luigi Ventura * 
Italian. Joined Vatican diplomatic corps 1978, working in Brazil, Bolivia and UK. Appointed papal nuncio 1995, subsequently serving in: Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, and Niger, 1995-1999; Chile, 1999-2001; Canada, 2001-2009; and France, 2009 to 2019. News February 2019 of preliminary sexual assault investigation by French prosecutors: Parisian city employee in his 30s alleged that Ventura had touched him ‘insistently‘ on the buttocks three times during a ceremony at Paris city hall the previous month. LaCroix reported several similar accounts from other young men. On 2/22/2019, a similar incident was reported to Vatican embassy in Ottawa; alleged incident took place at a Quebec shrine in 2008, when complainant was 32 and Ventura was papal nuncio to Canada. In July 2019, following more public allegations, Vatican waived Ventura’s diplomatic immunity, opening possibility of criminal trial in France. Six alleged victims had come forward at this point; one was an 18-year-old seminarian at the time of the alleged abuse. Vatican announced Pope’s acceptance of Ventura’s resignation on 12/17/2019, a week after Ventura reached the standard retirement age of 75. Convicted 12/16/2020 of placing his hands on the buttocks of five men. Given an eight-month suspended prison sentence and ordered to pay “13,000 euros ($15,800) to four of the men and 9,000 euros ($10,900) in legal costs.”


Bishop Emannuel Lafont
Bishop of Cayenne, French Guiana, 2004-2020. On 10/18/2020, Lafont called police saying he was being physically threatened by a 27-year-old man living at his residence. The young man, a recent Haitian immigrant, said Lafont had offered him lodging and assistance obtaining residency papers in exchange for sex. Lafont submitted his resignation to Pope Francis one week later, on 10/26/2020, his 75th birthday; Pope accepted it that same day. Cayenne prosecutor opened preliminary investigation in March 2021, after young man filed official complaint. In early April 2021, church officials announced that Lafont would be investigated under Vos estis lux mundi. News coverage 4/7/2021 revealed that in 2008, five priests of the Cayenne diocese, including the vicar general and chancellor, had written to the papal nuncio complaining about Lafont’s “financial, pastoral and sexual conduct.” Lafont denies allegation.


Bishop Franziskus Eisenbach
Resigned age 58 in 2002 per canon 401.2 after female university professor accused him of sexual abuse while performing an exorcism. Mainz auxilary bishop emeritus.

Bishop Heinrich Maria Janssen
Hildesheim bishop 1957-1983. Retired at age 76. Died 1988. Accused in 2015 of sexual abuse of a boy from 1958 to 1963, beginning when the boy was age 10. Abuse was said to have included masturbation, anal and oral sex. Diocesan investigators deemed the accusations “plausible” and awarded Janssen’s accuser 10,000 euros “in recognition of his suffering.” In October 2018 a 70-year-old man alleged abuse in 1957 by Janssen, and by two other priests who were involved with children’s homes. Janssen’s first accuser stated that Janssen was a “great patron” of the children’s homes and “liked to hang out there often.”

Bishop Walter Mixa
Bishop of Eichstätt, 1996-2000; Bishop of Military, 2000-2010; Bishop of Augsburg, 2005-2010. Resigned as bishop of Military and bishop of Augsburg on 5/8/2010 at age 69 per canon 401.2 after accusations he severely beat children at at a Schrobenhausen orphanage in the 1970s and misappropriated the orphanage’s funds. Reportedly sexually abused minors, including an altar boy; Office of Public Prosecution opened investigation which it soon closed, citing insufficient evidence. Accused also of sexually abusing seminarians between 1996 and 2005. Augsburg bishop emeritus.


Archbishop Anthony Sablan Apuron, O.F.M.Cap.
Agaña archbishop 1986-April 2019.  Accused of raping and/or molesting at least seven minors. Found guilty of unspecified canonical crimes and sentenced to removal from office and exile from Guam, according to 3/16/2018 press release by the Apostolic Tribunal of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Apuron appealed. In a press release on 4/4/2019, the Vatican announced that the CDF’s Tribunal of Second Instance had upheld the initial verdict, finding Apuron “guilty of delicts against the Sixth Commandment with minors.” Despite the finding, Apuron was neither laicized nor stripped of his title. His penalties are: the loss of his office, permanent prohibition from entering the Agaña archdiocese (which comprises all of Guam), and permanent prohibition from “using the insignia attached to the rank of Bishop.” He remains archbishop emeritus of Agaña and receives a monthly stipend of $1,500 from the church.

An August 2019 investigative report by AP revealed that as archbishop, Apuron had covered up for other abusers, blocked SOL reform legislation, and destroyed all of the archdiocese’s abuse files before leaving the post in 2016.

Background and Chronology
Apuron is a member of Neocatechumenal Way, a controversial church movement. He sparked a public outcry in 2011 when he deeded a $40M+ church property in Yona for indefinite use as a Neocatechumenate seminary and theological institute (see pages 77-80 of September 2016 archdiocesan report).  

In October 2014, he dismissed Deacon Steven Martinez from the archdiocesan review board after Martinez accused him of ignoring church sex abuse policy by harboring Rev. John Wadeson, who had been accused twice of child sex abuse in the U.S..

In late November 2014, Guam news media reported that Apuron had met privately at the Vatican with Pope Francis and the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (see Vatican bulletin). At around the same time, a man named John Toves publicly accused the archbishop of sexually abusing his cousin when Toves and his cousin attended a high school seminary in the early 1980s. The archdiocesan review board said it would not investigate Toves’ allegation.

In January 2015, the archdiocese was visited by a high-ranking Vatican official who had received letters of complaint about Apuron from Guamanian Catholics.

In August 2015, the Vatican reportedly was notified of Apuron’s alleged rape of a former altar boy, Walter Denton, at Our Lady of Mount Carmel church in Agat in 1977. However, Denton did not go public until June 2016, shortly after public allegations that Apuron had sexually assaulted two other altar boys at the same parish in the 1970s: Roy Quintanilla released a letter accusing Apuron of molesting him at age 12; and Doris Concepcion came forward to say that Apuron had sexually abused her late son, Joseph A. Quinata, when Quinata was an 11-year-old altar boy in the late 1970s.

Apuron denied all the allegations, attributing them to a malicious plot against him.

Apuron was placed on leave by Pope Francis 6/6/2016. The Agana archdiocese was assigned a temporary administrator, Archbishop Savio Hon Tai-Fai, secretary for the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples. A week later, another former altar boy at Our Lady of Mount Carmel came forward to accuse Apuron of sexually assaulting him at age 15 in 1977.

On 7/1/2016, four victims filed a lawsuit against Apuron for libel and slander. On 7/27/2016, Hon stated that Apuron’s alleged abuses had been reported to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Hon also said he had removed from the archdiocesan website all of Apuron’s threats against accusers. By August 2016, at least five men had accused Apuron of abusing them as boys. 

On 8/13/2016, a news outlet published an account by a man who says he witnessed child sex abuse by Apuron in 1964, when the man was a 10-year-old altar boy at Our Lady of Peace and Safe Journey Catholic Church in Chalan Pago. He said he witnessed another altar boy, also age 10, being sexually assaulted by the parish priest and by Apuron, then age 19.

In the meantime, Hon revealed that Apuron had disobeyed an order by Pope Francis to terminate use of the Yona property by the Neocatechumenates. On 9/15/2016, Hon released a letter saying he had asked Pope Francis to remove Apuron. On 9/16/2016, Hon released a report on the controversial Neocatechumenate seminary, the Redemptoris Mater House of Formation. On 9/20/2016, an archdiocesan spokesperson said (12) that the Neocatechumenates in Guam had a powerful ally in Cardinal Fernando Filoni, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples. On 9/30/2016, the archdiocese announced that Apuron would be put on canonical trial for his alleged crimes.

On 10/31/2016, the Vatican announced the appointment of Michael Byrnes, auxiliary bishop of Detroit, as coadjutor archbishop “with special faculties” to the Agaña archdiocese. The Vatican has “just formed all the conditions for the trial,” Hon told reporters in early November.

On 11/9/2016, the archdiocese regained control of the Yona property, when Byrnes cancelled Apuron’s controversial 2011 deeds that had given the property to the Neocatechumenates.

On 1/11/2017, a private investigator hired by the attorney for Apuron accusers found the archbishop living in a private home in Fairfield, California. The home was owned by the vice president of the Bank of Guam’s San Francisco branch.

Cardinal Raymond Burke was sent by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to preside over the canonical trial, which commenced in February 2017; Apuron was not required to attend.

Canon lawyer Patrick Wall said of confidential church documents obtained by a news outlet that the documents indicate that Apuron’s case was known to the Vatican in 2008, as shown by the case’s protocol number and year.

On 7/6/2017, Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Byrnes stated, “I think it would be a disaster if Archbishop Apuron were to return as the bishop of record.”

In October 2017, Archbishop Byrnes said that the Vatican tribunal had reached a conclusion about Apuron.

In January 2018, Apuron’s nephew filed a federal lawsuit against the archdiocese, alleging that Apuron had raped him in 1989 or 1990, when the nephew was age 15 or 16. This was the first allegation that Apuron had perpetrated sexual assault after becoming archbishop. Apuron responded by saying he was innocent of all allegations against him. The archbishop was photographed in an affectionate encounter with Pope Francis in February 2018.

On 3/16/2018, the Apostolic Tribunal for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith announced that Apuron had been found guilty of “certain of the accusations” he has faced. The announcement did not specify which of his possible canonical crimes earned him the guilty verdict. In addition to child sexual abuse, the archbishop has been accused of enabling child sexual abuse, causing scandal, financial misconduct, disobedience, and doctrinal waywardness. 

Apuron filed an appeal. On 4/4/2019, the Vatican announced that on 2/7/2019, the CDF’s Tribunal of Second Instance had upheld the guilty verdict and imposed the following penalties on the archbishop: “the privation of office; the perpetual prohibition from dwelling, even temporarily, in the jurisdiction of the Archdiocese of Agaña; and the perpetual prohibition from using the insignia attached to the rank of Bishop.” The verdict is final and unappealable. Apuron remains a priest, receives a monthly stipend from the church of $1,500, and retains his title of archbishop emeritus.

An August 2019 investigative report by the Associated Press revealed that Apuron as archbishop “oversaw a culture of impunity where abusers went unpunished.” AP also reported that Apuron had destroyed all abuse files in the archdiocese’s archive, possibly in a bonfire outside the chancery before he left his post.

Bishop Tomas Aguon Camacho
Bishop of Chalan Kanoa, Northern Mariana Islands, 1985-2010. Accused in a lawsuit filed in February 2017 of the rape and sexual abuse of a 10-year-old altar boy on Guam approximately 1971-1974. Accused in a second lawsuit, filed in 4/2017, of repeated sexual abuse of another 10-year-old altar boy, in the early 1960s at a Mongmong parish. Second accuser said he found porn in the rectory and Camacho caught him, perfomed sex acts on him, then threatened to tell the boy’s mother he looked at porn if he told. Remained Bishop Emeritus of Chalan Kanoa. Died 3/5/2018.

Archbishop Felixberto Camacho Flores
Appointed Agaña Apostolic Administrator 1970, Bishop 1971, then Archbishop 1984. Died 10/25/1985. Accused in a 5/31/2017 lawsuit of sexually abusing an 11-year-old boy in 1966. His accuser said he was a student at Cathedral Grade School at the time and Flores was an Agaña Cathedral priest.


Bishop Juan José Pineda Fasquelle, C.M.F.
Accused 2017 by two former seminarians of sexual abuse in the early 2010’s, when Pineda taught at Tegucigalpa archdiocesan seminary. Alleged victims submitted testimonies to papal envoy, who visited archdiocese in May 2017. Envoy also investigated alleged financial misdeeds by Pineda and Cardinal-archbishop Oscar Andrés Rodríguez Maradiaga, S.D.B.. Allegations were referenced in December 2017 news reports (12) and detailed in March 2018 news report. Pineda resigned as auxiliary bishop of Tegucigalpa on 7/20/2018, at age 57. Tegucigalpa auxiliary bishop emeritus.


Bishop Joannes B.M. Gijsen *
Bishop of Roermond, Netherlands, 1972-1995; bishop of Reykjavik, Iceland, 1996-2007. Retired 2007, age 75. Dutch. News in 2010 of 1950s alleged abuse of two boys. Remained Reykjavik bishop emeritus. Died 2013. Dutch church acknowledged his guilt in 2014.


Bishop Franco Mulakkal
Auxiliary bishop of Delhi 2009-2013; bishop of Jullundur (more often referred to as Jalandhar) 2013-Present. Accused in a police report filed in late June 2018 of raping a Missionaries of Jesus’ nun 13 times from 2014 to 2016. Mulakkal had been the official patron of the nun’s community. Mulakkal allegedly first raped the victim on 5/5/2014 at her order’s house in Kuravilangad, Kerala. Beginning in January 2017, she reported the abuse to the church repeatedly, contacting nearly a dozen officials. They included Cardinal George Alencherry, who in November 2017 discouraged her from taking her case to the media or police, according to her family members. She sent letters to the papal nuncio to India, Archbishop Giambattista Diquattro, on 1/28/2018 and 6/25/2018. She also reportedly told Delhi Archbishop Couto in early May 2018 when he visited her order’s house. Yet church authorities took no action until September 2018, following a protest by fellow nuns in support of the victim at Kerala’s High Court. The Vatican finally relieved Mulakkal of his administrative duties on 9/20/2018 [see episcopal conference notice]. He was arrested 9/21/2018 but released on bail 10/15/2018, returning home to hundreds of well-wishers. On 4/9/2019, Indian police presented Mulakkal with a 2,000-page chargesheet, including statements by more than 80 witnesses. The charges included rape of a woman incapable of giving consent, causing grievous bodily harm during rape, illegal confinement, criminal intimidation, and unnatural intercourse. The trial was supposed to begin on 11/11/2019 but was repeatedly delayed by defense postponements. In February 2020, a second nun publicly accused Mulakkal of sexual misconduct, although she did not file an official complaint; she said Mulakkal had hugged her, kissed her, and made sexually lewd remarks during 2015-2017. On 8/13/2020, Mulakkal’s trial officially began. On 9/15/2020, the judge approved Mulakkal’s request to bar the media from the trial. The victim began testifying the following day. In March 2021, the court heard testimony against Mulakkal from several witnesses, including Bishop Kurien Valiakandathil of the diocese of Bhagalpur, in eastern India. Mulakkal maintains his innocence, saying he has been “the real victim.” Although his diocese continues to be run by an administrator, he is believed to be still living in the bishop’s house, and he retains the title of bishop of Jullunderu.

Bishop Kannikadass Antony William 
Appointed bishop of Mysore diocese 2017. In November 2019, 37 of Mysore’s roughly 100 priests publicized a letter they had written to Pope Francis requesting William’s removal. They accused the bishop of “crimes of moral turpitude … involving financial irregularities, sexual misconduct, kidnapping and suspected murders.” They said the bishop had had sexual relationships with at least 10 women and fathered at least two children. The bishop denied the allegations, saying the priests were retaliating because they opposed the bishop’s “administrative reforms.” In December 2019, a citizens’ group filed an initial complaint with police accusing the bishop of threatening a woman who had tried to report sexual harassment by a priest. In June 2020, a retired high court judge formally complained to Indian church authorities, accusing William of murder, corruption, sexual misconduct, and other crimes. As of September 2020, the bishop remained in his position, denying allegations. He has not been criminally charged.


Archbishop Richard A. Burke, S.P.S. *
Accused 2009 of 1983 sexual abuse of 14-year-old girl in Nigeria. [See victim’s statement.] Resigned 2010, age 61, per canon 401.2Admitted “failure to observe his oath of celibacy.” Sued RTÉ, claiming victim was 20, not 14. Suit settled 2015: RTÉ paid legal costs but made no concession on victim’s age. Benin City archbishop emeritus.

Bishop Eamonn Casey
Resigned 1992, age 65, after revelation that he fathered a child in 1970s. Fled Ireland,  worked in Ecuador missions, then English diocese.  Accused 2005 of sexual assault of girl, age 5, 30 years earlier. Casey denied accusation. Not charged. Returned to Ireland 2006.  Retired to nursing home 2011. New accusation April 2016 by a Limerick woman.  Remained  Galway and Kilmacduagh bishop emeritus until his  death March 13, 2017.  News report March 2019 that victim who reported Casey in 2005 was his niece; she says she was raped and sexually abused by Casey for a decade beginning at age 5. News report also revealed settlements with two other victims: the Limerick woman who came forward in 2016, and another woman compensated by the Redress board in 2005. Both women allege being sexually assaulted by Casey as children in the 1950s and 1960s.

Bishop Brendan Oliver Comiskey, SS.CC.
Resigned 2002, age 66, per canon 401.2, after revelations that he protected serial abuser Fr. Sean FortuneFerns inquiry in 2005 reported two allegations against Comiskey: 1990 complaint of misconduct toward young woman over age 16, and accusation by Fortune in his 1999 suicide note. Comiskey denied both. Ferns bishop emeritus.

Bishop John Magee, S.P.S.
Stepped aside but didn’t resign 2009 after internal watchdog report that he had mishandled two abusive priests. State launched its own inquiry. Resignation announced 2010, per canon 401.2State’s report 2011 revealed more cover-up and 2008 report to church of Magee’s inappropriate behavior toward teen, age 17-18. Magee admitted conduct, denied sexual intent. Not charged. Cloyne bishop emeritus.

Archbishop John Charles McQuaid, C.S.Sp.
Retired 1971, age 76, as Dublin archbishop. Died 1973. First accused of sex abuse in 1999 book. News in 2011 that McQuaid was cleric described in 2010 supplement to Murphy report with two complaints of child sex abuse, including of a 12-year-old boy in 1961, and one “separate concern.”


Bishop Gerardo Antonazzo
Bishop of Sora-Cassino-Aquino-Pontecorvo 2013-Present. Investigation April 2016 by prosecutors in Cassino, in response to a letter from a seminarian accusing Antonazzo of sexually molesting him and seven other adults. Remains in post as of April 2021.

Bishop Giuseppe Carraro
Auxiliary bishop of Treviso 1952-1956; bishop of Vittorio Veneto 1956-1958; bishop of Verona 1958-1978. Retired 1978, age 78, as Verona bishop. Died 1980. Accused 2009 of repeatedly molesting boy who attended school for deaf. Carraro was being considered for beatification at time of complaint.


Bishop Gordon Bennett, S.J.
Auxiliary bishop of Baltimore 1998-2004. Made bishop of Mandeville, Jamaica in 2004. Removed as Mandeville bishop in 2006 at age 59, per canon 401.2. News reports at the time attributed the early departure to ill health, but in March 2019, Baltimore archbishop Lori revealed that Bennett’s removal had been due to “an allegation of sexual harassment of a young adult.” As of Lori’s March 2019 announcement, Bennett is restricted from ministry in the Baltimore and Wheeling-Charleston WV dioceses.


Bishop Cornelius Schilder, M.H.M. *
Bishop of Ngong 2002-2009. Vatican informed in 2007 of reports of Schilder’s early 1990s abuse of a Maasai herds boy. Dutch. Resigned 2009, age 67, per canon 401.2. Accused in 2013 of early 1990s sexual abuse of a young seminarian. Ngong bishop emeritus.


Bishop Andrew J. Karnley
Apostolic administrator of Monrovia 2005-2009; Cape Palmas bishop 2011-Present. Publication May 2019 in Liberian news outlet of an 8/15/2018 letter from former priest to the papal nuncio, Archbishop Dagoberto Campos Salas, alleging sexual harassment and abuse of power by Karnley and Archbishop Lewis J. Zeigler, archbishop of Monrovia. Alleged victim is a former Monrovia priest. He accuses Karnley of repeated sexual overtures that began in 1997, when Karnley was vocations director and the priest was a seminarian. Zeigler is accused of making a sexual advance to the priest on one occasion, after Zeigler became Monrovia archbishop. The complainant said he endured repeated retaliations from both bishops because of his refusal to have sex with them. Karnley emphatically refuted the allegations. In December 2018, the president of the Liberia Bishop’s Conference, Bishop Anthony Borwah, reportedly emailed the priest asking him not to go public with the allegations. In June 2019, after publication of the complainant’s letter, Borwah and papal nuncio Campos Salas were summoned to the Vatican to discuss the situation. A news article questioned the accuser’s veracity. As of January 2020, the alleged victim had left the priesthood and his country; Zeigler and Karnley remain bishops of their respective dioceses.

Archbishop Lewis J. Zeigler
Coadjutor of Monrovia 2009-2011; archbishop of Monrovia 2011-Present. Publication May 2019 in a Liberian news outlet of an 8/15/2018 letter from former priest to the papal nuncio, Archbishop Dagoberto Campos Salas, alleging sexual harassment and abuse of power by Zeigler and Bishop Andrew J. Karnley of the Cape Palmas diocese. Alleged victim is a former Monrovia priest. He accuses Karnley of repeated sexual overtures that began in 1997, when Karnley was vocations director and the priest was a seminarian. Zeigler is accused of making a sexual advance to the priest on one occasion, after Zeigler became Monrovia archbishop. The complainant said he endured repeated retaliations from both bishops because of his refusal to have sex with them. Karnley emphatically refuted the allegations. In December 2018, the president of the Liberia Bishop’s Conference, Bishop Anthony Borwah, reportedly emailed the priest asking him not to go public with the allegations. In June 2019, after publication of the complainant’s letter, Borwah and papal nuncio Campos Salas were summoned to the Vatican to discuss the situation. A news article questioned the accuser’s veracity. As of January 2020, the alleged victim had left the priesthood and his country; Zeigler and Karnley remain bishops of their respective dioceses.


Bishop Ronald Philippe Bär, O.S.B. 
Resigned abruptly 1993, age 66, as bishop of Rotterdam and the Military diocese. Told a Dutch journalist his departure was due to blackmail and “rumors of homosexuality.” Retired to Belgian monasteryBanned from public speaking in 2003 by Vatican. Deetman report 2011 said Bär had allowed unsuitable men to become priests. News report 2018:  20 of 39 Dutch bishops 1945-2010 were complicit in child sexual abuse, and four perpetrated abuse: Bär, Niënhaus (Utrecht), Gijsen (Roermond), and ter Schure (Den Bosch). Bär’s alleged victims were seminarians. He remains bishop emeritus of Rotterdam.

Bishop Johannes Willem Maria Bluyssen
Resigned 1984, age 57, as s’Hertogenbosch bishop. Admitted 2010 to destroying abuse files in 1970s. Died 2013. Accused 2014 of repeated rape of Beekvliet minor seminary student 1957-1959. A church Complaints Committee announced August 2015 that evidence was not sufficient, although it did not “exclude” that the victim had been sexually abused.

Bishop Joannes B.M. Gijsen *
Retired 2007, age 75. Dutch. News in 2010 of 1950s alleged abuse of two boys. Remained Reykjavik, Iceland bishop emeritus. Died 2013. Dutch church acknowledged his guilt in 2014.

Bishop Jan Niënhaus
Utrecht auxiliary bishop. Died 2000. Dutch church admitted 2014 he molested young boys 1950s-1970s.

Bishop Cornelius Schilder, M.H.M. *
Vatican informed in 2007 of reports of Schilder’s early 1990s abuse of a Maasai herds boy. Dutch. Resigned 2009, age 67, per canon 401.2. Accused in 2013 of early 1990s sexual abuse of a young seminarian. Ngong bishop emeritus.

Bishop Joannes Gerardus ter Schure, S.D.B.
Retired 1998, age 76. s’Hertogenbosch bishop. Died 2003. News in 2010 that Salesians settled claim of sexual abuse of a boy by ter Schure at Don Rua monastery in Ugchelen 1948-53.


Bishop Charles Edward Drennan 
Resigned October 2019, age 59, as bishop of Palmerston North diocese, following Vatican investigation of “unacceptable” sexual behavior toward a young woman. Cardinal John Dew, head of NZ church, then revealed sexual misconduct complaint several years earlier of Drennan’s relationship with a “mature woman” that did not involve sexual assault. Drennan remains bishop emeritus.


Archbishop Richard A. Burke, S.P.S. *
Coadjutor bishop of Warri 1995-1997; bishop of Warri 1997-2007; archbishop of Benin City 2007-2010. Accused 2009 of 1983 sexual abuse of 14-year-old girl in Nigeria. [See victim’s statement.] Resigned 2010, age 61, per canon 401.2. Admitted “failure to observe his oath of celibacy.” Sued RTÉ, claiming victim was 20, not 14. Suit settled 2015: RTÉ paid legal costs but made no concession on victim’s age. Benin City archbishop emeritus.


Bishop Georg Müller, SS.CC.
Apostolic administrator of Trondheim prelature 1988-1997; prelate of Trondheim 1997-2009. Admitted 2009 to 1990s sexual abuse of boy. Resigned as Trondheim prelate same year, age 58, per canon 401.2. Retained titles of bishop and Prelate Emeritus until his death on 10/25/2015.


Bishop Jorge Adolfo Carlos Livieres Banks
Accused 2002 in criminal complaint by three young men of sexual assault of minors. Livieres filed counter-charges of extortion and libel. Accusers then produced document allegedly signed by Livieres showing he tried to pay them to stay quiet. Case stalled and ended ambiguously. Resigned 2003, age 74, per canon 401.2. Encarnación bishop emeritus until his death in 2018.

Bishop Fernando Armindo Lugo Méndez, S.V.D.
Resigned as San Pedro bishop in 2005, age 55, per canon 401.2. Voluntarily laicized 2008 so that he could run for office. Paraguay president 2008-2012. Admitted 2009 to fathering a child in 2007; another woman said he had fathered her child too, and that their involvement began when she was 18 and Lugo still a bishop. Admitted 2012 to fathering child of another woman while bishop.


Bishop Guillermo Martín Abanto Guzmán
Fathered child in 2011. Resigned July 2013, age 49, per canon 401.2, after child’s mother took him to court, demanding he recognize paternity. Peru Military bishop emeritus.

Bishop Gabino Miranda Melgarejo
Removed as Ayachucho o Huamanga auxiliary bishop May 2013, age 53, after accused of molesting children he is said to have targeted during confession. Laicized July 2013.


Bishop Teodoro C. Bacani, Jr.
Resigned 2003, age 63, per canon 401.2, after accused by secretary of sexual misconduct. Apologized. Novaliches bishop emeritus.

Bishop Filomeno Gonzales Bactol
Bishop of Naval 1988-2017. Accused 2007 of molesting boys by ex-missionary who himself faced deportation for alleged pedophilia in 1990s. Retired 2017, age 77. Naval bishop emeritus.

Bishop Dinualdo Destajo Gutierrez
Bishop of Marbel 1982-2018. Retired at age 79. Died 2/10/2019. Accused in two complaints filed in 2020 under the Child Victims Act in New York. In 1969-1971, Gutierrez was a priest at St. Francis de Sales parish in Queens, diocese of Brooklyn NY, when he allegedly molested two altar boys.

Bishop Crisostomo A. Yalung
Resigned as Antipolo bishop 2002, age 49, per canon 401.2, after news he had fathered a child. Antipolo bishop emeritus.


Cardinal Henryk Gulbinowicz 
Wrocław archbishop 1976-2004. Made cardinal 1985. Accused in 1997 news interview of child sex abuse; neither church nor civil authorities responded. Retired 2004 at age 80. Accused publicly again May 2019 by same victim, who said alleged abuse occurred in January 1989, when he was age 15. Cardinal denied allegation. In September 2019, prosecutors dropped case because prescription period had passed. On 11/6/2020, the Vatican embassy in Poland announced sanctions against the cardinal, as a “result of an investigation into accusations made against [him] and after an analysis of other allegations.” He was forbidden from using his bishop’s insignia or participating in religious or public events, and was denied the right to a cathedral funeral Mass or cathedral burial. However, he retained the titles of cardinal and archbishop emeritus. Gulbinowicz died shortly thereafter, on 11/16/2020.

Archbishop Juliusz Paetz
Bishop of Łomża 1983-1996; Archbishop of Poznań 1996-2002. Resigned 2002, age 67, after accused of sexually abusing young seminarians. Paetz denied the allegations. Initially banned from public ministry, but ban lifted by Vatican June 2010. Then ban at some point was reinstated: in April 2016, Vatican warned Paetz to stop public appearances and resume private life of “repentance and prayer.” Remained Poznan archbishop emeritus. Died 11/15/2019.

Bishop Jan Szkodoń
Auxiliary bishop of Kraków 1988-Present. Victim reported him to papal nuncio in May 2019. She alleges bishop sexually abused her for years, starting in 1998, when she was 15. Prosecutor dropped case due to statute of limitations, but wrote that the evidence indicated a “high probability” the allegation is true. Case made public in Polish newspaper February 2020. While denying wrongdoing, the bishop stated that he would step down from ministry while Vatican investigated. On 7/23/2021, the Polish papal nuncio announced that a canonical process had judged the bishop’s guilt “not proven.” Vatican found he had “acted imprudently,” however, by meeting alone with the girl in his private apartment, and it ordered him to do a three-month closed retreat. The nuncio said that the bishop already had fulfilled this requirement, as he had been living in seclusion since February 2020.

Archbishop Józef Wesołowski *
Polish. Resigned as papal nuncio to Dominican Republic August 2013 and was secretly recalled to Vatican, just days before DR news media exposed his alleged sex assaults of children on Santo Domingo waterfront. Church officials did not inform DR law enforcement. Prosecution sought by both DR and Poland. Vatican reportedly rebuffed extradition request by Poland January 2014. Laicization announced June 2014, four days after DR bishop tweeted about seeing Wesołowski strolling in Rome. Diplomatic immunity removed August 2014, day after NY Times exposé. Put under house arrest in Vatican City State September 2014. Found with 100,000+ child abuse images on his laptop and Vatican-owned computer. Released from house arrest after 60 days; free to move around Vatican City State beginning late November 2014. Hospitalized night before his July 2015 trial in VCS, causing trial to be indefinitely postponed. Released from hospital one week later, and freed to walk around Vatican City, according to BBC. Found dead in his Vatican apartment 8/28/2015. Trial never resumed.


Bishop Carlos Alberto de Pinho Moreira Azevedo
Auxiliary bishop of Lisbon 2005-2011. Accused 2010 of 1980s sexual abuse of seminarian. Delegate of the Pontifical Council for Culture, Vatican City, 2011-Present.


Bishop Daniel Fernández Torres
Auxiliary bishop of San Juan 2007-2010; bishop of Arecibo 2010-Present. Accused February 2014 of lewd acts against a male minor shortly before becoming bishop in 2010. Denied charges, said were “act of revenge.” Arecibo diocese was under scrutiny for mishandling of sex abuse cases. Archbishop Roberto González called the allegations “slander.” Charges dismissed by Vatican April 2014. Accuser’s attorney said client wasn’t interviewed by Vatican. Info about Fernández Torres’ alleged abuse reportedly withheld from Vatican by PR apostolic delegate Jozef Wesołowski.


Cardinal Keith Michael Patrick O’Brien
St. Andrews and Edinburgh archbishop 1985-2013. Vatican announced his retirement on 2/25/2013, a few weeks before he turned 75 and shortly after he was accused publicly of sexual advances toward priests, dating to 1980s. Despite circumstances, retirement was accepted per canon 401.1. See also church announcement. O’Brien issued partial admission and apology [1,2]. Remained archbishop emeritus. Following 2014 investigation of allegations by Bishop Charles Scicluna, Pope Francis in March 2015 accepted O’Brien’s resignation of his “rights and privileges” as a Cardinal. He was allowed to retain the title, however. Died 3/19/2018.

Bishop Roderick Wright
Resigned 1996, age 56, after admitting to sex with woman he counseled. Married the woman. Admitted to son with previous woman. Remained Argyll and The Isles bishop emeritus. Died 2005.


Bishop Reginald Joseph Orsmond
Johannesburg bishop 1984-2002. Founded South Africa’s Boys Town 1958; there until named bishop 1984. Died 2002. Accused in former Boys Town resident’s 2007 memoir of of rape and molestation over a three-year period, beginning when the author was age 13 in the 1960s. Orsmond is said to have plied the boy with alcohol. Several other men also alleged sexual abuse as boys in the facility by Orsmond; an ex-staffer said it was an “open secret” that Orsmond had boys sleep in his room. Archdiocesan “professional conduct committee” deemed the allegations credible.


Bishop Hansjörg Vogel
Appointed bishop of Basel 1994. Resigned 1995, age 44, after acknowledging impregnating woman. Basel {Bâle, Basilea} bishop emeritus.


Bishop Juan A. Arzube
Accused 2003 of sexual abuse of 11-year-old boy 1975-76. Remained Los Angeles CA auxiliary bishop emeritus. Died 2007.

Bishop Gordon Bennett, S.J.
Auxiliary bishop of Baltimore 1998-2004. Made bishop of Mandeville, Jamaica in 2004. Removed as Mandeville bishop in 2006 at age 59, per canon 401.2. News reports at the time attributed the early departure to ill health, but in March 2019, Baltimore archbishop Lori revealed that Bennett’s removal had been due to “an allegation of sexual harassment of a young adult.” As of Lori’s March 2019 announcement, Bennett is restricted from ministry in the Baltimore and Wheeling-Charleston WV dioceses.

Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua
One of three clergy accused of sexually abusing a child in a September 2018 lawsuit. The alleged victim said that Bevilacqua had groped her chest at St. Gabriel’s church in Whitehall in the 1980s, when Bevilacqua was Pittsburgh bishop. Bevilacqua died in 2012.

Bishop Michael J. Bransfield
Alleged abuser of adults and minors. As Wheeling-Charleston WV bishop (2005-2018), Bransfield subjected eight young seminarians and priests to “unwanted sexual overtures, sexual harassment and sexual contact” and used diocesan monies to fund “an extravagant and lavish lifestyle,” according to a church-ordered investigation overseen by his metropolitan, Archbishop William Lori of Baltimore. [See the church investigators’ February 2019 report, which was made public in December 2019 by the Washington Post.]

Bransfield’s first public allegation of child sexual abuse occurred in April 2012, when a victim of ex-priest Stanley Gana testified in a Philadelphia court that Gana had told him that his friend Bransfield was having sex with teen boys. In July 2012, media reported that a victim had notified the Philadelphia archdiocese in 2007 of his sexual abuse by then-Father Bransfield during the 1970s, at Lansdale Catholic High School in Lansdale PA. Bransfield denied all abuse. [See his statement.]            

In August 2018, three WV priests notified church authorities that they had been subjected to unwanted sexual overtures by Bransfield [see page 6 of the internal investigative report.] Two of the priests had served as Bransfield’s Priest-Secretary and a third had been offered the position.

On 9/13/2018, the Vatican announced that the Pope had accepted Bransfield’s resignation. The announcement came five days after Bransfield turned 75, the age at which every bishop must submit his letter of resignation to the Pope. On the same day, U.S. papal nuncio Christoph Pierre announced that the Pope had appointed Baltimore archbishop William Lori as Wheeling-Charleston’s apostolic administrator and instructed Lori to investigate Bransfield’s alleged sexual harassment of adults. By November 2018, church hotline had received complaints of bishop’s alleged misconduct occurring in WV, PA and Washington DC. In March 2019, Archbishop Lori announced Bransfield’s suspension from priestly and episcopal ministry in the Baltimore and Wheeling-Charleston dioceses. On 3/19/2019, the WV attorney general filed suit against Bransfield and the Wheeling-Charleston diocese, accusing it of violating consumer protection laws by falsely advertising that its schools and camps were safe. [See the AG’s original complaint and its May 2019 motion to amend the complaint.] Also in March, Bransfield’s former personal altar server and secretary filed a lawsuit against the bishop and the W-C diocese, alleging sexual harassment and a 2014 sexual assault.

On 6/5/2019, Lori publicly reported that the allegations against Bransfield of sexual harassment and of financial misconduct had been found credible. A Washington Post exposé in July 2019 revealed that top church officials in the U.S. and the Vatican had received warnings about Bransfield as early as 2012, and that the bishop had doled out cash gifts to many senior Catholic officials, including Lori. In a 7/19/2019 communique, the apostolic nuncio announced the Pope’s disciplinary measures against Bransfield, which included a prohibition from all public ministry and the requirement to “make personal amends.”

The sexual harassment lawsuit against Bransfield filed in March 2019 settled in August 2019. Another former seminarian alleged sexual harassment in a suit filed in September 2019. In October 2019, Bransfield was accused of molesting a nine-year-old girl in 2012 at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington D.C..

A WaPo investigation in late November 2019 revealed details of how the authorities handled the 2007 child sexual abuse complaint against Bransfield. As detailed in the church’s own internal report [see page 31], the victim was a ninth-grader at Lansdale Catholic H.S. in Lansdale PA in 1977, when then-Father Bransfield began molesting him.

The victim first went to Philly’s then-archbishop Rigali in 2007. Rigali did not notify the public or even his review board of the allegation, but he did send a report to the local district attorney, who did not pursue the case. In October 2009, Rigali closed the case internally, ruling the allegation “unsubstantiated.” In 2012, the same victim contacted the archdiocese again. Rigali notified the apostolic nuncio, who forwarded the report to Cardinal Marc Ouellet, prefect for the Congregation for Bishops. Neither Rigali nor the Vatican took action against Bransfield, who continued to lead the Wheeling-Charleston diocese for six more years.

In November 2019, Bransfield’s W-C successor Bishop Mark Brennan published the “plan of amends” he was rrecommending for Bransfield. It stipulated that Bransfield must issue several apologies: to the people he had sexually harassed, the faithful of the diocese, and the diocesan employees who “suffered from a culture of intimidation and retribution” that Bransfield created. The plan also reduced Bransfield’s monthly compensation from $6,200 to $736, and required him to reimburse the diocese $792,638.00 of diocesan funds that Bransfield used for personal expenses.

On 8/20/2020, W-C bishop Brennan announced the Congregation for Bishops’ revision of his plan of amends. The Congregation significantly weakened the reparations proposed by Brennan the previous November. Bransfield was required to repay only $441,000 of the money he had misused; his monthly compensation was set at $2,250 instead of $736; and his apology to the faithful included no admission of wrongdoing. Bransfield remains Wheeling-Charleston’s bishop emeritus. 

Bishop Robert H. Brom
Accused in 1990s of coercing young seminarian into sex in 1980s, while Duluth MN bishop. Accuser retracted allegation, reportedly as condition of $85K settlement. Retired 2013, age 75. San Diego CA bishop emeritus.

Bishop Tod D. Brown
News in 2007 of 1997 letter to church alleging Brown’s sexual abuse of boy, age 12, in 1965. Church had deemed it not credible. Brown denied abuse. Never charged. Neither he nor victim interviewed by police. Retired 2012, age 75. Orange in California bishop emeritus.

Bishop John B. Brungardt
Appointed bishop of Dodge City KS 2010. On 2/8/2021, the Dodge City diocese announced that Brungardt had been notified by the Kansas Bureau of Investigation of a child sexual abuse allegation against him. According to reports, he voluntarily stepped down from duties while retaining title of Dodge City bishop. Citing SST and Vos estis lux mundi, Kansas City KS archbishop Joseph Naumann announced he had CDF authorization to head a preliminary church investigation. Brungardt denies the allegation.

Bishop Leonard P. Cowley
St. Paul MN auxiliary bishop 1958-1973. Died 1973. Name released February 2015 as one of 17 archdiocesan clergy accused of sexual abuse or misconduct with a minor. A man filed a claim that Cowley sexually abused him at age 15 during trip to northern Minnesota in 1968.

Bishop Joseph P. Denning
Brooklyn auxiliary bishop 1959-1982. Died 2/12/1990. Included on diocese’s February 2019 list of credibly accused clergy. “Finding of credibility” occurred after Denning’s death.

Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio
Bishop of Brooklyn NY 2003-Present. [See his complete assignment history.] Accused of child sexual abuse in November 2019 letter sent by victims’ attorney to Newark archdiocese. The alleged incidents took place in the mid-1970s when the alleged victim was an altar boy at St. Nicholas church and a student at St. Nicholas School in Jersey City NJ. He allegedly was abused repeatedly by DiMarzio and the late Rev. Albert Mark, both priests at St. Nicholas at the time. News January 2020 of Vatican-ordered Vos Estis probe of DiMarzio headed by NY metropolitan Cardinal Timothy Dolan. Allegation by second man reported 6/4/2020. Man alleged repeated sexual abuse by DiMarzio when he was ages 6-7, in 1979 and 1980, at Holy Rosary church in Jersey City NJ. He is seeking $20M in compensation. DiMarzio denies both claims, and in a statement to AP, his attorney wrote, “We have uncovered conclusive evidence of Bishop DiMarzio’s innocence.” On 9/1/2021, the NY archdiocese announced that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith had found the two allegations “not to have the semblance of truth.” DiMarzio remains in office, as he did throughout the 21-month Vos Estis process; Vos Estis does not require an accused bishop to step down while being investigated. The civil cases remain pending.

Bishop Harold J. Dimmerling
Rapid City SD bishop 1969-1987. Died 1987 at age 73 while in office. “Credible” allegation of child sexual abuse by Dimmerling revealed November 2018 by St. Cloud MN bishop Donald Kettler. Alleged abuse occurred sometime during Dimmerling’s years as a St. Cloud diocesan priest (1940-1969).

Bishop Carroll T. Dozier
First bishop of Memphis diocese, 1971-1982. Died 1985 at age 74. News coverage of his enabling of abusers in 2010. In February 2019, the Richmond VA diocese, where Dozier was a priest 1937-1970, included him on its newly released list of clergy with credible and substantiated allegations of abuse of minors. It noted that an allegation against Dozier was reported after his death.

Bishop Paul V. Dudley
Retired 1995, age 68, as Sioux Falls SD bishop. Accused 2002 of fondling altar boy age 11 or 12 in 1950s. Accused also by two women. “Cleared” by church 2003. Remained emeritus. Died 2006.

Bishop Thomas L. Dupre
Bishop of Springfield MA 1995-2004. Accused 2004 of sexual abuse of two youths in 1976 and 1979. Resigned age 70 per canon 401.2, on 2/11/2004, same day that news broke. Sent to treatment. Indicted 9/24/2004 on two counts of rape, but D.A. dropped case several days later, saying that SOL prevented prosecution. In late 2008, the Springfield diocese settled with 59 victims, including the two victims of Dupre who came forward previously. Dupre was forced to contribute his own funds towards the settlement. Remained Springfield MA bishop emeritus until his death on 12/30/2016 (see obit).

Bishop Joseph W. Estabrook
Ordained for the Albany diocese in 1969. Auxiliary bishop of U.S. Military, 2004-2012. Died 2/4/2012 (see obit). Accused in lawsuit filed August 2019 of sexually abusing a student ages 14-16 from 1969 to 1971 at St. Vincent de Paul parish in Albany. Not included in Albany diocese’s list of credibly accused priests as of 9/10/2021.

Bishop Joseph A. Ferrario
Honolulu HI auxiliary bishop and bishop 1977-1993. Accused of child rape in 1985 letter to papal nuncio. Lawsuit 1991 dismissed on SOL grounds. Retired as bishop 1993, age 67. Stayed in ministry and remained emeritus. Not charged. Died 2003. Named by more alleged victims 2013 and 2014.

Bishop Carl Anthony Fisher Jr.
Auxiliary bishop of Los Angeles 1987-1993Died 9/2/1993 at age 47. Included in an updated list of accused clergy posted by the Baltimore archdiocese on 4/24/2019. Archdiocese said it first was notified by a victim in 2002 and that “multiple individuals” have accused Fisher since then (see two versions of the archdiocesan list). Alleged abuse occurred in the 1970s, when then-Fr. Fisher was working in Baltimore parishes.  

Bishop Louis E. Gelineau
Resigned 1997, age 69, after accused of attempting to fondle then drown boy at Vermont orphanage in 1950. In 1997 deposition, denied 1993 sexual abuse of altar boy. Remains Providence RI bishop emeritus.

Archbishop Peter Gerety
Coadjutor bishop of Portland ME 1966-1967; apostolic administrator of Portland ME 1967-1969; bishop of Portland ME 1969-1974; archbishop of Newark NJ 1974-1986 (see career history). Retired 1986 at age 73. Died 9/20/2016 at age 104. First accused publicly in March 2021 lawsuit. Suit alleged that in 1976, when he was Newark archbishop, Gerety sexually assaulted a girl, age 5, on 3-4 different occasions in his bedroom in rectory of the Newark cathedral. According to a victims’ attorney cited in a May 2021 article, this was not the first allegation of sexual abuse against Gerety: in 2019, a man told the Newark archdiocese that Gerety had sexually abused him decades earlier.

Bishop Edward Grosz
Auxiliary bishop of Buffalo NY 1990-2020. Resignation accepted by Pope 3/2/2020, two weeks after Grosz turned 75. Along with diocese, Bishop Malone, and Bishop Scharfenberger, he was sued 11/23/2020 by NY Attorney General for failures to investigate, document, and monitor accused priests. Accused in a 7/12/2021 lawsuit of sexually abusing a 15-year-old boy in 1990, following the child’s confirmation Mass. The victim also alleged sexual abuse by Fr. Richard Keppeler. Grosz denied the allegation but voluntarily stepped aside from active ministry, pending a Vos Estis Lux Mundi investigation.

Bishop Robert E. Guglielmone
Bishop of Charleston SC 2009-Present. Accused in a lawsuit filed August 2019 in New York of sexually abusing a young boy in the 1970s when he was a priest at St. Martin of Tours church in Amityville NY (Rockville Centre diocese). Guglielmone denied the allegation, saying it has “no merit whatsoever.” On 12/6/2020, Guglielmone announced that the Vatican had found him not guilty, based on an investigation by the diocese of Rockville Centre. As of April 2021, lawsuit remains pending; civil proceedings froze when RC diocese filed for bankruptcy in October 2020.

Bishop Timothy J. Harrington
Worcester MA bishop 1983-1994. Died 1997. Accused 2005 of sexual abuse of boy from ages 11 to 15 in the 1950s.

Bishop Joseph H. Hart
Auxiliary bishop of Cheyenne WY 1976-1978; bishop of Cheyenne 1978-2001. Resigned at age 70, per canon 401.2.  Hart reportedly has been accused of sexually assaulting at least 18 children; 12 victims have come forward in the Kansas City-St. Joseph MO diocese, and six in the Cheyenne diocese. Both dioceses have deemed the allegations to be credible or substantiated.

For his first 20 years as a priest, from 1956 to 1976, Hart worked in the Kansas City-St. Joseph diocese. In 2002, a KC newspaper revealed Hart was reported to that diocese in 1989 and 1992 for child molestation in the 1970s. In 1976, he left KC to become auxiliary bishop and then bishop of Cheyenne. In 2001, a victim whom Hart allegedly abused in 1978, after he had become Cheyenne bishop, reported his abuse to the Cheyenne Police Department. The police and local DA investigated and pronounced the allegation to be “without merit.” Sixteen years later, in July 2018, Cheyenne bishop Steven Biegler announced that a new internal investigation launched the previous December had found Hart “credibly accused” of sexually assaulting two boys, including the victim discredited by law enforcement in 2002. The KC-St. Joseph diocese then acknowledged that its abuse settlements in 2008 and 2014 had included 10 KC victims of Hart. In August 2018, Cheyenne police re-opened their 2001-2002 investigation, and the Cheyenne diocese said it had heard from a third credible WY victim. In August 2019, Cheyenne police indicated that they were recommending that Hart be criminally charged. In September 2019, the diocese disclosed “credible and substantiated” allegations by three additional victims, bringing the reported victim count in Wyoming to six. In July 2020, prosecutors in Natrona County WY closed their case against Hart without filing charges, rejecting the recommendation of Cheyenne police.

On 1/25/2021, the Cheyenne diocese announced the CDF’s ruling on Hart. Regarding his alleged assaults of 12 victims who were under age 16 (11 boys and one girl) : the CDF “exonerated” Hart of seven accusations and said five others “could not be proven with moral certitude.” A 13th case was not addressed, the diocesan announcement said. Two other cases, involving victims age 16 and 17, were dismissed because at the time of the abuse, the victims were not deemed minors under canon law. The CDF ruling was a “canonical rebuke,” citing Hart for his “flagrant lack of prudence” in being alone with minors and ignoring restrictions. Those restrictions — no contact with minors and seminarians, and no public engagements — remain in place. Responding to the ruling, Bishop Biegler of Cheyenne reiterated his belief in the credibility of Hart’s victims, and Bishop Johnston of KC-St. Joseph stated that Hart remains on his diocese’s list of priests with substantiated allegations. Hart remains bishop emeritus of Cheyenne.

Bishop Howard J. Hubbard
Albany bishop 1977-2014. As of April 2021, he had been accused of child sexual abuse by at least seven individuals. Allegations first surfaced in February 2004: Hubbard was accused of paying a teen under age 18 for sex on two occasions in the 1970s, and having a sexual relationship with a young adult male who took his own life in 1978, leaving a note citing his abuse by “Howard” as the reason for his suicide. Hubbard denied allegations, saying he had not violated celibacy. He hired his own investigator, who issued a report in June 2004 saying there was “no credible evidence” of wrongdoing. Retired from Albany post in 2014, at the standard retirement age of 75. From mid-August to mid-October 2019, the first two months of NY’s one-year revival window for civil claims, Hubbard was named in four separate lawsuits. After the first of these lawsuits was reported, Hubbard stepped away from public ministry. The four cases involved Hubbard’s alleged sexual assaults of: a 16-year-old boy in the 1990s at St. Mary’s church in Ballston Spa NY (see paragraphs 139-155 of 8/14/2019 complaint); a teenage girl in the late 1970s at the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Schenectady NY; a teenage boy, age 16-18, from 1976 to 1978 at St. Michael the Archangel church in Troy NY (see 10/3/2019 complaint); and a boy, age 9 or 10, in the late 1980s at St. John the Baptist church in Chesterton NY (see 10/11/2019 complaint). Fifth lawsuit filed 8/10/2020 (see complaintaccused Hubbard of abusing boy, ages 9-11, in 1974-76 at St. James Church (now St. Francis of Assisi) in Albany. The alleged abuses of the child, which occurred multiple times, included anal rape. Note: Each of the five CVA lawsuits cited above assert that Hubbard was abusing the victim in concert with one or two other abusive Albany priests, all of whom are named in the complaints. Additional lawsuit filed 3/9/2021 accused Hubbard of sexually assaulting an 11-year-old boy in the summer of 1977, shortly after Hubbard was installed as Albany bishop. Alleged incident occurred at the rectory of St. Edward the Confessor in Clifton Park NY. Albany diocese said that church is investigating Hubbard per Vos estis lux mundi. (Metropolitan is Cardinal Dolan.) Hubbard repeatedly has denied allegations.

Bishop John J. Jenik
Appointed auxiliary bishop of New York archdiocese 2014.  A 10/29/2018 announcement by Cardinal Dolan revealed a “credible and substantiated” allegation that Jenik had sexually abused a minor. Victim described inappropriate relationship 1980-1986, beginning in his early teens. Jenik denied the abuse. Included on NY archdiocese’s list of credibly accused priests. Removed from public ministry pending a Vatican review. Resignation at standard retirement age of 75 announced 10/10/2019 without comment by Vatican. Lawsuit filed August 2020 accused Jenik of “trafficking” boy, age 14, to a school tutor known to molest children.

Bishop Peter A. Libasci
Auxiliary bishop of Rockville Centre NY 2007-2011; bishop of Manchester NH 2011-Present. Accused of child sexual abuse in lawsuit filed 7/14/2021 in Suffolk County NY court. Alleged abuse occurred on “numerous occasions” in 1983-1984, when Libasci was pastor of Sts. Cyril and Methodius parish, Deer Park NY. Victim was an altar boy, ages 12-13. The alleged abuse included but was not limited to the then-priest’s fondling and groping of boy’s genitals. Libasci denies the allegation.

Bishop Robert N. Lynch
Bishop of St. Petersburg FL 1996-2016. Denied 2001 accusation of sexual harassment by diocesan communications director. Church paid accuser $100K; bishop said it was severance, not hush money. Accuser’s lawyer said there was “unwanted touching” but no “overt sexual actions.” Retired age 76 in 2016. Remains emeritus bishop.

Bishop Thomas W. Lyons
Auxiliary bishop Washington D.C. 1974-1988. Died 3/25/1988, age 64. In 2007 or 2008 SOL legislative reform hearing, victim told DC City Council that he had been raped as a ten-year-old in 1965 by then-Msgr. Lyons. In 2008, Richard Sipe went public with allegation of another victim, who was sexually abused by Lyons from ages seven to 17. Washington DC archdiocese included Lyons on its 10/15/2018 list of “credibly accused” clergy, noting that the archdiocese had received report in 2002.

Bishop Eugene A. Marino, S.S.J.
Resigned 1990, age 56, as Atlanta GA archbishop. Woman, age 27, soon went public regarding two-year sexual relationship with Marino, which he acknowledged. He remained archbishop emeritus. Died 2000.

Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick
Auxiliary bishop of New York archdiocese 1977-1981; bishop of Metuchen NJ 1982-1986; archbishop of Newark NJ 1986-2000; elevated to cardinal 2001; archbishop of Washington D.C. 2001-2006.

Stripped of his clerical status on 2/13/2019, becoming the first cardinal to be laicized for sex crimes. As of 8/4/2021, McCarrick had been publicly accused of sexually abusing an estimated 13 minors in New York and New Jersey [see summary] and of sexually abusing and/or harassing at least eight seminarians and priests of the Metuchen diocese and Newark archdiocese.

Substantive allegations against McCarrick were public on the internet for more than a decade before the mainstream press reported them. In 2005, conservative Catholic blogger Matt Abbott wrote about McCarrick’s alleged abuses of seminarians and priests. In 2008, scholar Richard Sipe published an open letter to Pope Benedict, saying he knew of “at least four priests who have had sexual encounters with Cardinal McCarrick.” In 2010, in an essay entitled the Cardinal McCarrick Syndrome, Sipe published excerpts from files of a church settlement with a former priest who was sexually abused by McCarrick.

The mainstream press began reporting on McCarrick’s alleged offenses on 6/20/2018, when Cardinal Dolan announced that the New York archdiocesan review board had found a child sexual abuse allegation against McCarrick to be “credible and substantiated” and that McCarrick had been ordered to cease public ministry. It was the first public allegation that McCarrick had assaulted a child. In a statement on the Washington DC archdiocesan website, McCarrick denied the abuse: “I have absolutely no recollection of this reported abuse, and believe in my innocence.” The victim was a 16-year-old student at NYC’s Cathedral Prep Seminary in late 1971, when then-Monsignor McCarrick allegedly sexually assaulted him in the sacristy of St. Patrick’s Cathedral. A year later, in late 1972, the boy was attacked by McCarrick a second time in one of the cathedral’s bathrooms. In separate statements released simultaneously with Dolan’s, Bishop James Checchio of Metuchen NJ and Archbishop Joseph Tobin of Newark NJ admitted that the Metuchen and Newark dioceses had “received three allegations of [McCarrick’s] sexual misconduct with adults decades ago; two of these allegations resulted in settlements.”

On 7/15/2018, the New York Times ran a story about the two adult victims granted church settlements: Robert Ciolek, sexually harassed as a young seminarian in the 1980s by then-Metuchen bishop McCarrick; and a second man, unnamed, who was sexually abused as a seminarian beginning in 1987, when McCarrick was archbishop of Newark. Ciolek received an $80,000 settlement in 2005, and the second priest settled for $100,000 in 2007. The third adult victim referenced in the NJ bishops’ statements, the one who did not receive a settlement, told his story in late July 2018 to the Washington Post. Rev. Lauro C. Sedlmayer said he was assaulted by McCarrick beginning in 1991, a few years after Sedlmayer arrived from Brazil as a young priest. Sedlmayer unsuccessfully sued the Newark and Metuchen dioceses in 2011 and was counter-sued by Metuchen bishop Bootkoski in 2012. (He later testified in McCarrick’s canonical trial and allowed himself to be named in a follow-up Washington Post story.)

On 7/19/2018, the New York Times broke the harrowing story of a second child victim, later identified as James Grein. Grein described a 20-year sexually abusive relationship with McCarrick that began in 1969, when Grein was 11 years old. On 7/28/2018, the Vatican announced that the Pope had accepted McCarrick’s resignation from the College of Cardinals and ordered him to live a life of prayer and penance while a canonical investigation proceeded. In August 2018, Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò released his “testimony” alleging that a network in the hierarchy, including Pope Francis, had long-standing knowledge of McCarrick’s abuse of seminarians but took no action. According to Viganò, Francis knew McCarrick was a predator but willfully ignored sanctions that Pope Benedict had imposed on McCarrick in 2009 or 2010. On 10/6/2018, the Pope announced a “thorough study” of the church’s handling of McCarrick “to ascertain all the relevant facts.” The following day, Cardinal Marc Ouellet, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, published an open letter to Viganò, defending Pope Francis and stating that according to Vatican files, the restrictions applied by Benedict against McCarrick were advisory only, not sanctions with “an obligatory mandate … carrying canonical penalties.” On 12/27/2018, James Grein testified in the Vatican investigation that McCarrick had abused him as a boy during confessions.

On 1/11/2019, the CDF Congresso issued a laicization decree, finding McCarrick guilty of “solicitation in the Sacrament of Confession, and sins against the Sixth Commandment with minors and with adults, with the aggravating factor of the abuse of power.” McCarrick appealed, but the Ordinary Session of the CDF confirmed the decree on 2/13/2019. Sentence was rendered res iudicata – it cannot be appealed.

In April 2019, Camille Biros, co-administrator of the New York archdiocese’s victim compensation program, told the New Yorker that they had received seven claims of child sexual abuse against McCarrick. In May 2019, McCarrick’s former aide published excerpts from the ex-cardinal’s personal correspondence indicating that in 2008, Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, then prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, imposed restrictions on McCarrick: no public appearances without Re’s permission and no travel to Rome. Within a year, McCarrick was ignoring the restrictions. In a lawsuit filed in New York in August 2019, McCarrick victim Grein said that he had reported his abuse in person to Pope John Paul II in 1988. McCarrick denied abusing Grein in the confessional in an interview reported September 2019 in Slate. That denial spurred a public essay by another victim in October 2019 revealing a group of accusers calling themselves “The Nathans.” In December 2019, two lawsuits filed in New Jersey alleged abuses by McCarrick – one by James Grein, accusing the Metuchen diocese and Newark archdiocese of gross negligence, and another by John Bellocchio, citing sexual assault at age 14 in 1995 or 1996 when then-Newark archbishop McCarrick visited his parish, St. Francis of Assisi in Hackensack. A Washington Post exposé on December 26, 2019 revealed that McCarrick had doled out more than $600,000 in cash gifts to fellow clerics, including two popes who allegedly knew of his sexual offenses: John Paul II received $90,000 and Benedict XVI received $291,000.

A 7/15/2020 piece in the New York Times revealed that five men, all related, had testified in the Vatican inquiry in New York in late December 2018. The five had met McCarrick at their Bronx parish in 1970, when they were children and he was a young monsignor in the New York archdiocese. McCarrick molested all five of them. (This appears to be the same group of victims whose experience was described more generally in the October 2019 essay by “Nathan Doe.”) Another man sexually abused as a child by McCarrick filed suit on 7/21/2020 in New Jersey Superior Court. The suit accused McCarrick, then bishop of Metuchen, of participating in a sex ring with five other NJ clerics. According to the complaint, the plaintiff was first sexually abused in 1978 by a Newark NJ priest who introduced him to Brother Andrew Hewitt CFC, then principal of Essex Catholic High School. Hewitt also sexually abused the boy and brought him to McCarrick’s beach house, where he was molested by McCarrick and three other clerics. The abuses by McCarrick occurred 1982-1983, when the victim was ages 14-16. A news report in August 2020 revealed that in the late 1980s, a priest of the Paterson NJ diocese told his bishop, Frank Rodimer, that seminarians had complained to him of McCarrick. According to the priest, Rodimer told him he had relayed the allegations to the papal nuncio. The report also detailed McCarrick’s enabling of abusive priests while he was Newark archbishop. In a lawsuit filed in New Jersey on 8/11/2020, another victim accused McCarrick of child sexual abuse. Gregory Downs said that McCarrick sexually assaulted him in St. Francis Cathedral in Metuchen in 1982 or 1983, when he was age 15 or 16. Downs, an altar boy, was preparing to serve Mass; McCarrick was bishop of Metuchen.

On 11/10/2020, the Vatican published a 449-page report into its investigation of the church’s “decision-making processes” related to McCarrick “from 1930 to 2017.”   

On 11/16/2020, a NJ.com report revealed a federal lawsuit filed by a victim in late September 2020. He said that from 1985 to 1990, beginning at age 12, he was raped and sexually abused by McCarrick on dozens of occasions. The abuse began when McCarrick was bishop of Metuchen and continued after he became archbishop of Newark.

On 7/28/2021, police in Wellesley MA filed a criminal complaint against McCarrick in district court, charging him with three counts of indecent assault and battery on a person over 14. The alleged assaults occurred in June 1974, when then-Msgr. McCarrick and the 16-year-old victim were attending a wedding at Wellesley College. McCarrick becomes the first U.S. cardinal and only the second U.S. bishop to be charged with child sexual abuse.

Also in late July 2021, a lawsuit filed in New Jersey accused McCarrick of sexually abusing a 12-year-old boy from Notre Dame parish in North Caldwell NJ. The alleged abuse occurred in 1986, apparently soon after McCarrick’s July 1986 installation as Newark archbishop.

On 8/4/2021, a lawsuit filed in New York accused McCarrick of sexually abusing a boy, ages 13-16, from 1975 to 1978. During the time of the alleged abuse, McCarrick was a priest and then auxiliary bishop in the New York archdiocese. The boy was a parishioner at St. Augustine church in Larchmont NY.

Re-cap: Tally of child sexual abuse allegations against McCarrick

In addition to sexually abusing numerous seminarians, McCarrick faces 13 allegations of child sexual abuse. Below is a list of those allegations, in the order that they became public. All of these allegations are referenced in the summary above.

— Minor 1 accused McCarrick of sexual assaulting him at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in 1971 and 1972, when the boy was ages 16 and 17. This victim’s report to the NY archdiocese in 2017 led to the archdiocese’s 6/20/2018 announcement, which unleashed the ongoing cascade of disclosures of the ex-cardinal’s alleged crimes:
— Minor 2 is James Grein, whose alleged abuse by McCarrick began in 1969, when Grein was 11 years old;
— Minor 3 is John Bellocchio, whose December 2019 lawsuit accuses McCarrick of sexually abusing him at age 14, in 1995 or 1996, when McCarrick was Newark archbishop;
— Minors 4-8 are the five male relatives who testified in the Vatican’s investigation of McCarrick. In the spring of 2019, they also submitted claims to the NY archdiocese’s Independent Reconciliation and Compensation Program, a scheme that was limited to those abused as minors;
— Minor 9 is the victim who filed suit on 7/21/2020 in New Jersey, alleging that McCarrick and several other clerics sexually abused him at the then-bishop’s beach house in the early 1980s, when the victim was ages 14-16;
— Minor 10 is Gregory Downs, whose 8/11/2020 lawsuit alleged that he was sexually abused by McCarrick in 1982 or 1983, when Downs was age 15 or 16;
— Minor 11 filed a federal lawsuit in late September 2020, alleging dozens of acts of rape and sexual abuse by McCarrick from 1985 to 1990, beginning when the victim was 12.
— Minor 12 accused McCarrick in a lawsuit filed in New Jersey last week of July 2021. McCarrick allegedly abused the 12-year-old boy from North Caldwell NJ soon after his July 1986 installation as Newark archbishop.
— Minor 13 accused McCarrick in a lawsuit filed in New York on 8/4/2021. It alleges that McCarrick sexually abused the boy, then ages 13 to 16, from 1975 to 1978, while McCarrick was a priest and then auxiliary bishop of the NY archdiocese.

Bishop James Francis McCarthy
Resigned 2002, age 59, after admitting to sexual involvement with adult women. Remains New York NY auxiliary bishop emeritus.

Bishop John R. McGann
Rockville Centre NY auxiliary bishop 1970-1976 and bishop 1976-2000. Died 2002. Accused of child sexual abuse by three individuals. Allegations first made public in February 2019 news conference. Two women described a party in the rectory of St. Agnes church, Rockville Centre, in 1967, when they were age 11. Then-Msgr. McGann and other priests were sitting around a table, and allegedly passed the girls from lap to lap, fondling them. The two filed individual lawsuits (see complaints 1 and 2) on 10/22/2019, with one victim citing 15 alleged incidents of abuse by McGann 1966-1971, when she was ages 10 to 15. A third complaint, also filed 10/22/2019 (see complaint), described McGann’s alleged sexual abuse of a boy on four occasions, starting in 1963 when the boy was 10.

Cardinal Humberto S. Medeiros
Boston MA archbishop 1970-1983. Died 1983. Accused 2002 of sexually abusing 14-year-old boy in 1979. Accuser said Medeiros touched his groin while giving him a “bear hug” in the archdiocesan chancery, where he was allegedly molested the same evening by vice-chancellor Rev. Fred Ryan.

Bishop-Elect Michel J. Mulloy
Appointed bishop of Duluth MN 6/19/2020. Resignation announced by Vatican 9/7/2020, before Mulloy could be installed. In a statement, the Rapid City SD diocese said it had received an allegation on 8/7/2020 that Mulloy had abused a minor in the early 1980s and that the “accusation met the standard of Canon Law for further investigation.” See also the statement by the diocese of Duluth. A priest of Rapid City since 1986, Mulloy served the diocese in several leadership roles, including vicar general, vicar for clergy, and interim diocesan administrator. As of 4/8/2021, he was not included in the Rapid City diocese’s online list of accused clerics.

Archbishop John C. Nienstedt
Auxiliary bishop of Detroit MI 1996-2001; bishop of New Ulm MN 2001-2007; coadjutor archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis MN 2007-2008; archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis 2008-2015. Stepped aside from duties December 2013 after allegation of inappropriately touching boy’s buttocks in 2009. Called allegation “entirely false.” Resumed duties March 2014 after prosecutor announced no charges due to insufficient evidence. Internal investigation of alleged misconduct toward adults revealed July 2014. It reportedly found Nienstedt made “sexual advances” toward two priests. Nienstedt kept findings secret and, according to MPR report , authorized new investigation by second law firm. Resigned June 2015, per 401.2, soon after archdiocese was charged criminally for contributing to child sex abuse. December 2018 public letter by Archbishop Hebda, Nienstedt’s successor, revealed additional allegation: As New Ulm bishop in 2005, Nienstedt allegedly invited two minors to his hotel room in Germany, undressed in front of them, and invited them to do the same. [See redacted account in prosecutor’s affidavit, pp. 56-57.] Although Nienstedt denied incident, Hebda barred him from public ministry in Twin Cities. Article 3/23/2020 revealed that Vatican had made no response to Hebda’s request mid-2019 to investigate Nienstedt under Vos estis lux mundi. Nienstedt remains Saint Paul and Minneapolis MN archbishop emeritus.

Bishop Thomas J. O’Brien
Bishop of Phoenix AZ diocese 1982-2003. Admitted in June 2003 to covering up child sexual abuse in his diocese. Arrested days later on charges related to a fatal hit-and-run auto accident, triggering his resignation at age 67. Convicted in that case and sentenced to probation and community service. Accused in lawsuit first filed in 2016 of repeated sexual abuse of a boy in Arizona when the boy was in 2nd to 5th grades 1977-1982. Alleged abuse involved oral sex. O’Brien denied the allegations. Remained Phoenix AZ bishop emeritus until his death on 8/26/2018.

Bishop Anthony J. O’Connell
Bishop of Knoxville TN 1988-1998; bishop of Palm Beach FL 1998-2002. Admitted 2002 to 1970s sexual abuse of Missouri high school seminary student. Resigned immediately as Palm Beach FL bishop per canon 401.2, age 63. Numerous former students alleged abuse. Not charged. Remained bishop emeritus until his death in 2012.

Bishop James S. Rausch
Phoenix AZ bishop 1977-1981. Died 1981. Boston Globe article on 8/20/2002 revealed allegation that Rausch had sexually abused a 17-year-old boy in Tucson in 1979 and then passed him on to two other priests, who also abused him.

Bishop George E. Rueger
Auxiliary bishop of Worcester MA diocese 1987-2005. Accused in 2002 lawsuit of rape and sexual abuse of boy age 13-14 in early 1960s. Denied allegation. Not charged. Alleged victim withdrew suit 2003, saying he had been told to do so by MA state police trooper. Rueger retired at standard retirement age of 75. Retained title of auxiliary bishop emeritus. Died 4/6/2019.

Bishop Daniel L. Ryan
Bishop of Springfield IL diocese 1984-1999. Resigned 10/19/1999, age 69, ten days before publicized lawsuit cited his hiring of male prostitutes. News 2002 that he solicited sex from boy, age 15, in 1984, and sexually abused another, age 16-17. Not charged, due to SOL. Internal diocesan study 2006 confirmed Ryan’s misconduct with adults and said he fostered a “culture of secrecy” that discouraged reports of abuse. Remained Springfield IL bishop emeritus until he died in 2015. Named in diocesan list of substantiated cases of sexual abuse of a minor by clergy, published by Bishop Paprocki in late 2018.

Bishop Alexander Salazar
Appointed auxiliary bishop Los Angeles 2004. Alleged ‘misconduct with minor’ first made public December 2018, after Vatican announced Pope had accepted Salazar’s resignation. However, archdiocese had known of allegation at least since 2005, according to 12/19/2018 public letter by Archbishop Gomez. Incident(s) occurred from around 1991 to 1997, when Salazar was a parish priest. In letter, Gomez said he had reported case to CDF, which “imposed certain precautionary measures.” Yet the public record shows Salazar in seemingly unrestricted bishop mode for years after archdiocese knew of allegation. See examples of his public appearances in 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 (1, 2), and 2017. Archbishop said review board found allegation “credible.” Salazar has “no faculties to minister.” He denies wrongdoing.

Archbishop Robert F. Sanchez
Resigned 1993, age 59, after accused of sexual contact with at least 5 women; some were ages 18 and 19. Stayed in ministry. Remained Santa Fe NM archbishop emeritus. Died 2012.

Bishop Guy Sansaricq
Auxiliary bishop of Brooklyn 2006-2010. Retired 2010, age 76. Accused of child sexual abuse in a civil complaint filed October 2019 under the Child Victims Act in New York. Victim was approximately ages 7-10 in 1993-1996, a student at St. Jerome’s School in Brooklyn, when Sansaricq allegedly molested him. Sansaricq died 8/21/2021.

Bishop William S. Skylstad
Spokane WA bishop 1990-2010. Accused 2005 of 1961-64 sexual abuse of girl under age 18. Skylstad denied the accusation, and investigator hired by him found no truth in the claim. Retired 2010, age 76. Worked 2011-2012 as apostolic administrator in Baker OR diocese. Spokane WA bishop emeritus.

Bishop Lawrence D. Soens
Bishop of Sioux City IA diocese 1983-1998. Resigned 1998, age 72. Accused publicly 2000s of ‘sadistic’ sexual abuse of 31 teen boys beginning late 1950s. Found guilty by 2008 review board. Not charged. Included in Davenport IA diocesan list of credibly accused clergy. Not included in the Sioux City diocesan list. Retains title of Sioux City IA bishop emeritus.

Cardinal Francis Joseph Spellman
New York NY archbishop 1939-1967. Accused in a February 2019 article of having groped a West Point cadet repeatedly during an interview for the school’s magazine in 1967, in the presence of a monsignor and two other cadets. The monsignor allegedly was standing behind Spellman, and each time the Cardinal slid his hand up the cadet’s thigh toward his crotch, the monsignor would stop the Cardinal by grabbing his wrist and whispering such things as, “Now, now, eminence.” Spellman’s accuser said that each time he was groped, then stopped, Spellman would take from a drawer a tie clasp, key chain, or gold-plated tie tack, which he would then give him. Spellman died in December 1967.

Bishop James S. Sullivan
Lansing MI auxiliary bishop 1972-1985; Fargo ND bishop 1985-2002. Resigned March 2002 at age 72, per canon 401.2. Reported reason was Alzheimer’s. Accused publicly three months later, in June 2002, of fondling a boy, age 16, in Michigan in 1966. Denied accusation. Charges not pursued due to SOL. Remained Fargo ND bishop emeritus. Died 2006. On 7/2/2021, Lansing diocese announced that two other allegations against Sullivan had been deemed credible. He sexually abused a 12-year-old boy in 1964, and an 11- or 12-year-old boy in 1966. Both children were abused at Lansing’s Church of the Resurrection parish, where then-Father Sullivan resided. Sullivan was added to the accused clergy lists of both the Lansing and Fargo dioceses.

Bishop Joseph Michael Sullivan
Auxiliary bishop of Brooklyn 1980-2005. Died 6/7/2013. Accused of sexually abusing a minor in a civil complaint filed under the Child Victims Act in New York. Alleged abuse occurred in 1982. Source: Dashboard of NY CVA complaints, Jeff Anderson & Associates.

Bishop Joseph V. Sullivan
Baton Rouge LA bishop 1974-1982. Died 1982. Accused in 2000s of sexual abuse of three different teen boys, 1969-1982. In 2004, Baton Rouge bishop Robert Muench called claims credible, removed Sullivan’s name from high school.

Bishop Joseph Keith Symons
Auxiliary bishop of St. Petersburg FL 1981-1983; bishop of Pensacola-Tallahassee FL 1983-1990; bishop of Palm Beach FL 1990-1998. Admitted 1995 to past sexual abuse of boy. Stayed in ministry. Remained Palm Beach FL bishop. Resigned 1998, age 65, after another victim emerged. Admitted to abuse of 5 boys. Not charged. Found in ministry 1999 in Lansing MI diocese. Bishop emeritus.

Bishop Austin B. Vaughan
Auxiliary bishop NY archdiocese 1977-2000. Died 2000. Accused November 2019 of sexually abusing a boy during 1979-1984 at St. Patrick’s in Newburgh NY, where Vaughan was pastor. Victim allegedly was also abused by Rev. Donald J. Whelan, another priest at the parish.

Archbishop Rembert George Weakland, O.S.B.
Resigned in 2002 immediately after news of $450K payment in 1998 to silence man accusing him of sexual assault when man was 32. Weakland had just turned 75, and resignation was accepted per canon 401.1 — the age-75 rule applying to bishops in standard situations. Weakland denied abuse but admitted to sexual relationship. Remains Milwaukee WI archbishop emeritus, residing in PA monastery.

Bishop Christopher J. Weldon
Springfield MA bishop 1950-1977 (see Weldon’s complete assignment history). Resigned from office early, at age 72, reportedly for reasons of health. Died five years later, in 1982. Accused of sexually abusing at least three minors.

First public allegation occurred in March 2005 civil complaint. Accused of three incidents of sexual assault of boy 1950-1956, when boy was ages 10-16. Alleged incidents took place at St. Michael’s Cathedral. In addition to watching the child being raped by another priest, Weldon allegedly fondled the child’s genitals, orally copulated and anally penetrated him, and forced the child to orally copulate him. Victim also alleged rape and sexual assault by six other clergy of the Springfield MA and Worcester dioceses, including his uncle, Msgr. Raymond J. Page, and then-Springfield priest Timothy J. Harrington, bishop of Worcester 1983-1994. In 2005, victim was in a Texas prison serving a 60-year sentence for murder. Although his lawyer said he had passed two polygraph tests, his allegations were deemed not credible by both the Springfield and Worcester bishops, and his brother denounced him as a “con man.” Victim voluntarily dismissed the case in September 2012. Book released 2018 revisited TX victim’s story and also accused Weldon of cutting deal with local DA in 1970s to not pursue murder charges against serial pedophile Fr. Richard Lavigne, suspected killer of altar boy Danny Croteau.

In late May 2019, newspaper reported that diocesan review board had privately informed another victim in September 2018 that it deemed credible his allegations of child sexual abuse by Weldon and two other Springfield priests, Edward Authier and Clarence Forand. The man had first met with diocesan representatives in December 2014, and on 6/13/2018, he met with the entire review board. He said he had been sexually assaulted by Weldon, Authier and Forand beginning at age 9 or 10 in the early 1960s. In early June 2019, the review board chair and diocese publicly denied that the man had accused Weldon. More publicity ensued, and the victim met with Bishop Rozanski. Diocese then acknowledged that it had deemed not credible two prior allegations against Weldon: by the TX victim, and by another man, who notified the diocese in 2016 while serving time in a MA prison.

In July 2019, diocese announced an internal probe of its response to the victim whom the review board had met in 2018. On 6/24/2020, the diocese published a report prepared by the lead investigator, retired judge Peter Velis. Velis said he found the 2018 complainant’s allegations against Weldon to be “unequivocally credible.” According to one of the accounts quoted in the report (see page 44), the victim recalled Weldon dragging him down a hallway and into a room. While the victim cried and struggled, other priests and boys stripped him naked, covered his head, and pushed him onto a bed, where he was gang-raped. Velis said the diocese’s process of receiving, investigating and assessing the victim’s allegations had been “greatly flawed.” Diocesan personnel who were mandatory reporters had failed to notify law enforcement, and a written summary of the longtime diocesan investigator’s April 2019 interview of the victim had been ‘inexplicably modified and manipulated’ before being given to the review board.

On 1/28/2021, the victim who was the focus of the Velis report filed a lawsuit against the Springfield diocese, Rozanski, and various diocesan officials, citing their deliberate cover-up of his credible claims.

Bishop Lawrence Harold Welsh
News in 2002 of police investigation 1986 alleging he had choked male prostitute during sex. Welsh admitted to most of accusation, except “amount of violence.” No charges filed. Resigned as Spokane bishop 1990 after drunk driving arrest. Made Saint Paul and Minneapolis auxiliary bishop 1991. Died 1999.

Bishop J. Kendrick Williams
Appointed founding bishop Lexington KY diocese 1988.  Resigned age 65 in 2002, per canon 401.2, after accused of sexual abuse of two boys, 1969 and 1981, and young adult late 1980s. Denied abusing anyone. Included in Louisville archdiocese’s February 2019 Religious Order Priests and Others list of accused clergy and in Lexington diocese’s list, released August 2020. Both sources said his case had been referred to the Vatican. According to Lexington list, bishop was accused of “sexual misconduct with minors in Louisville; a civil suit was filed by both individuals and the cases were settled as part of a large class action.” Williams remains Lexington KY bishop emeritus.

Bishop G. Patrick Ziemann
Forced to resign 1999 at age 57 after allegation by younger priest of coercing sex. Accused early 2000s of sexual abuse of 3 different  boys in 1960s and ’70s. Remained Santa Rosa CA bishop emeritus. Died 2009.


Bishop Francisco Domingo Barbosa Da Silveira
Resigned age 65 in 2009, per canon 401.2, after he filed extortion complaint revealing homosexual relations between him and two men. Remained Minas bishop emeritus. Died 2015.


Archbishop John Aloysius Ward, O.F.M. Cap.
Coadjutor bishop and bishop of Menevia 1980-1981; archbishop of Cardiff 1983-2001. Arrested 1999 for alleged assault of girl, age 7, in 1960-61. Not charged. Said he was falsely accused. Resigned 2001 at age 72, per canon 401.2, after outcry at his mishandling of two abusive priests. Remained Cardiff archbishop emeritus. Died 2007.


* assigned in more than one country during his career

Note: Inclusion in this list does not imply that individuals facing allegations are guilty of a crime or liable for civil claims. The reports contained in this list are merely allegations. 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.

We have excluded from the list the following allegations against bishops in the United States which were subsequently recanted or demonstrated to be incorrect: two allegations in 1992 against Bishop Gerald F. O’Keefe 1 2 (Davenport, Iowa); two allegations in 2002 against Cardinal Roger M. Mahony 3 4 5 (Los Angeles, California); and an allegation in 2002 against Cardinal Edward M. Egan 6 (New York, New York).

This page was last updated July 13, 2021.