Survivors Groups Meet with Iowa Bishops

February 3, 2006

DES MOINES, Iowa Church abuse victims and sympathizers finally got their chance to speak with diocese bishops today.

While they're grateful, they're not satisfied.

Several victims groups made some demands of the bishops, who say they will have to consider each before responding.

Among the groups' demands was disciplinary action against Lawrence Soens, the former Sioux City bishop who has been accused in at least ten lawsuits of molesting young boys in the 1960s.

Soens retired as bishop in 1998, but victims advocates say they are frustrated over reports that Soens has helped lead church functions.

The group also asked the bishops to issue two press releases -- one within the Church and one to the secular media -- outlining the accusations against Soens.

The meeting was attended by three of Iowa's bishops, including William Franklin, of Davenport, Joseph Charron of Des Moines and Dubuque Archbishop Jerome Hanus.

The fourth, Sioux City Bishop R. Walker Nickless, could not attend because he was in Denver for his mother's funeral. Both sides agreed to a second meeting before the end of the month.


Any original material on these pages is copyright © 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.