Dispositions, 2002-Present

By Diocese of Rochester
Published June 6, 2012
Cached July 7, 2012

             In 2001, the Holy See issued new legislation to assist bishops in handling allegations of sexual abuse of minors by Catholic clerics. Consistent with that legislation, in 2002, the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops established the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People and Essential Norms.  The Charter provides comprehensive procedures for addressing such allegations.  It requires each diocese in the United States to initiate specific actions to create safe environments.  It also directs action in the following areas: healing and reconciliation of victims and survivors; prompt and effective response to allegations; cooperation with civil authorities; disciplining offenders; and providing for means of accountability.

             Bishop Clark has been unwavering in his commitment to the principals set forth in the Charter.  As he wrote in the Catholic Courier newspaper,  “Our Diocese has sought to reach out to those who were hurt in the past by the behavior of some of our priests.  I have offered then – and I offer now – my sincere apologies on behalf of our local Church, and a personal pledge to each and every one of the victims and to all our faithful:  We will work tirelessly and do everything within our power to prevent such incidents now and in the future.  This we promise.”

             Consistent with that commitment to openness and transparency, the Diocese of Rochester today publishes the names of all clerics removed from ministry since 2002.  This list summarizes the final dispositions of all claims resolved since the Charter's in 2002. The Diocese will update this list if and when any new credible allegations of abuse are presented.

            The disposition entitled “Prayer and Penance” is explained as follows:  The Essential Norms recognize that there might be cases where a priest or deacon has either admitted to a past act of abuse or has been found guilty of one, but dismissal from the clerical state does not occur.  This could happen, for instance, when a priest is seriously ill or of advanced age.  In these cases, too, he is forbidden from all public ministry and from otherwise presenting himself as a priest.  He is expected to dedicate his life to praying for victims and repenting of his past offenses.

             The Diocese confirms that no priest who has harmed a minor remains in public ministry.

              Victims of abuse always have a right to report to the civil authorities.  To report a case of possible sexual abuse and to receive help and guidance from the Diocese of Rochester, victims are encouraged to contact the victims’ assistance coordinator appointed by Bishop Clark:  Barbara Pedeville: (585) 328-3228 ext. 1215 or (800) 388-7177 ext. 1215.

1. Cases concluded canonically by dismissal or prayer and penance. The clerics whose names are included in this section,  at the end of a canonical process, either have been dismissed from the clerical state or assigned to a life of prayer and penance, with no public ministry possible

Thomas Burr  Prayer and Penance

Thomas Corbett  Prayer and Penance

Eugene Emo  Dismissed from the clerical state

Robert Hammond Prayer and Penance

William Lum  Prayer and Penance

Dennis Sewar Dismissed from the clerical state

David Simon   Prayer and Penance

Francis Vogt   Prayer and Penance

Robert Winterkorn Prayer and Penance

2. Cases concluded canonically by voluntary laicization. Laicization is a canonical process whereby the cleric voluntarily requests that he be separated from the clerical state.  Included in this section are the names of priests who sought laicization after being accused of the sexual abuse of a minor.

Albert Cason

Paul Cloonan

Gerard Guli

Joseph Larrabee

Foster Rogers

3. Cases not yet resolved canonically. Included in this section are the names of priests where canonical proceedings remain to be completed. In each case, the cleric involved has been removed from public ministry and remains on administrative leave.

Vincent Panepinto

Paul Schnacky

Dennis Shaw

Conrad Sundholm

Michael Volino

4. Complaints unresolved due to death of accused cleric. This section includes the names of deceased clergy for whom criminal or canonical proceedings were not completed because the cleric died, but the existence of allegations has been publicized.

David Gramkee

Robert O’Neill

John Steger

5. Complaints received after the death of a cleric and publicized.

David Bonin


















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