Priest Who Admits to Sexual Abuse Leaves Monastery

Associated Press State & Local Wire
August 30, 2002

A retired priest who admitted that he sexually abused a boy in the Bison-Meadow parish in the 1960s has moved out of a monastery west of Rapid City that also houses a day-care.

The Rev. John Corry has lived at St. Martin Monastery for the past 10 years, but had left by Wednesday, said Sister Lorraine, a monastery spokeswoman.

The abuse Corry admitted to apparently began when the victim was 10 and continued until he was 14 years old, according to Bishop Blase Cupich of the Catholic Diocese of Rapid City. The victim now is 54.

The diocese presented a letter to parishioners Aug. 18 that outlined the abuse and asked for other victims to come forward. None has.

At the time, the diocese said Corry had left St. Martin. But on Aug. 23, Cupich found out that Corry was still living there.

The bishop visited Corry that day and told him he must leave and relocate to a place with appropriate supervision.

Earlier this week, Corry had not obeyed the directive, Cupich said in a news release.

"This is painful," Cupich wrote. "But it is a pain much like lancing a boil and once that pain is experienced, forgiveness can be offered and healing can begin."

St. Martin Monastery is the Mother House of the Benedictine Sisters and is the former St. Martin's High School. When the high school closed in 1991, six classrooms were converted to one-bedroom apartments.

Since 1992, retired priests occupied two of those apartments, Sister Lorraine said. Women occupied five other apartments.

There is also a child day-care center on the second floor of the former high school that serves fewer than a dozen children, Sister Lorraine said.

"Sister (Carol) is with the children at all times," Sister Lorraine said. "It is possible that he (Corry) may have seen them coming or going, but once they are under her jurisdiction, they are with her all the time."

Teresa Johnson, mother of a 14-month-old child at the day-care center, said Thursday she was confident in the center.

"I have popped in at different times and I am so pleased with the care," Johnson said. "It is the most marvelous program."

Diocese officials did not disclose Corry's whereabouts Thursday. Bishop Cupich was out of town and not available for comment.


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