Sex Abuse Allegations against Former Rochester Priest Determined Credible

November 17, 2009

An allegation concerning sexual abuse of a minor dating back to the mid-1970s against a former Rochester priest, has been determined to be credible.

Reverend Conrad Sundholm, a retired priest who now lives Florida, was pastor at St. Salome's Church in Irondequoit when the abuse allegedly occurred. Rev. Sundholm is now 80-years-old.

Rev. Sundholm's priestly faculties have been withdrawn. He cannot exercise public ministry.

Rev. Sundholm was ordained on June 4th, 1955. Prior to retiring in 1999, he served at Blessed Sacrament Parish (1955-1960) and Sacred Heart Cathedral (1960-1965) in Rochester; at St. Mary's in Auburn (1965-1971); at St. Cecilia (1971- 1974) and St. Salome in Irondequoit (1974-1982); and at Holy Family/St. Aloysius in Auburn (1982-1999).

Pastors in the parishes where Rev. Sundholm had served made announcements concerning the allegation during all masses this past weekend. The pastors also asked anyone with further information to come forward. So far, no one has come forward.

The Diocese of Rochester hires retired FBI and police experts from a private firm to investigate abuse complaints. An independent diocesan review board - whose members include retired law enforcement officials, child advocates, and mental health professionals - reviews the results of the investigations. The review board offers a recommendation to the Bishop on the credibility of the complaints. Cases are then sent to the Vatican for final disposition. The maximum action the Vatican can take is removing the individual under investigation from the priesthood.

The Diocese of Rochester encourages victims of abuse 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 Matthew H. Clark:

Barbara Pedeville

Telephone: 585-328-3228, ext. 1215 (or toll-free 1-800-388- 7177, ext. 1215)



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