Defrocked Priest Herbert Richey Found Working at St. Clair Shores Parish

By Bill Gallagher
January 27, 2011

[with video]

Members of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, went to the headquarters of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Detroit. They delivered a letter complaining about Herbert Richey, a defrocked priest from the Diocese of Toledo recently found to be working in the music ministry of Saint Margaret of Scotland in Saint Clair Shores.

"My understanding is that he molested eight children in Toledo and the church settled out of court for undisclosed payments, and Mr. Richey appeared here in Trenton at Saint Joseph's," said SNAP member Matthew Jatczak.

In a prepared statement, a spokesman for the archdiocese said that in 2002, "Mr. Richey was immediately removed and ordered by the Detroit archdiocese not to work in any of its parishes or schools."

However, somehow with the order and presumed background checks in place, Richey ended up at Saint Margaret's.

"We think it's a very irresponsible hire by the Catholic Church. We just want an answer of who hired him and why, and since they're trying to clean up their image, how this can happen in this day and age," Jatczak said.

The spokesman added, "The archdiocese Review Board will commence an investigation of this matter the intention of assuring this unacceptable situation does not happen again."

SNAP members find the church again failing to protect people, especially children.

"I think they've tried to pretend that it didn't exist, and I think they've been pretty tough on people who have come forth with that kind of information about what happened to them," said SNAP member Allan Kosack.

"It's unfair also. The church has many abuses. Sexual abuse is one them. I had a relative that was abused, and they also have an ability to hide the bodies," said SNAP member Eusevia Aquino.


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