D.M. Diocese Passes Audit Related to Abuse Charges

By Todd Erzen
Des Moines Register
March 8, 2008

The Diocese of Des Moines passed its fourth audit in four tries as it continues to deal with the fallout from the priest abuse scandal that surfaced in 2002.

The audit was conducted on behalf of the U.S. Bishops Conference Office of Child and Youth Protection and pertains to a period between August 2005 and June 2007.

Six accusations against five different diocesan priests were reported during that time regarding the abuse of a minor. The alleged incidents took place between 10 and 40 years ago. Three of the accused are now deceased, one had already been removed from the priesthood, and one, Rev. Phillip Hobt of St. Albert Catholic Schools in Council Bluffs, voluntarily requested to leave the priesthood following the charge.

Jo Mulvihill, a counselor for Polk County Victims Services who serves as the Victim Assistance Advocate for the diocese, said she is confident the Des Moines Diocese is making an effort to heal wounds and encourage openness.

"The diocese gives me a lot of support with anything I ask of them," Mulvihill said. "If they are listening and they are caring, we can take care of about anything."

Victims are encouraged to contact Mulvihill at 286-2031. More on the audit can be found at by clicking on "Child and Youth Protection."


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