List from Diocese of Accused Priests Includes Some with Ties to Steele, Dodge Counties
By Jeffrey Jackson
Owatonna People's Press
December 16, 2013
Two priests with ties to Steele County and three others with ties to Dodge County are among the 14 priests named Monday by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Winona as being “credibly accused” of sexually abusing minors.
The two priests with Steele County ties have since died. Two of the priests with Dodge County ties have died and the third has had his ministerial privileges suspended.
The diocese filed the list in Ramsey County District Court Monday morning, a day before a deadline set by a judge.
Most of the priests on the list served in Catholic churches and schools from the late 1940s to the early 1990s, though two served in the last decade.
The priests with ties to Steele County are:
The Rev. Sylvester F. Brown. He was ordained May 31, 1956, and served at St. Mary School in Owatonna beginning on Aug. 16 of that same year. He also served at the State School in Owatonna, beginning on Aug. 22, 1961. In June 1963, he was assigned to Winona and served in various parishes after that. He returned to the area on Nov. 1, 1989, when he was assigned to St. Ann church in Janesville — a parish to which he continued to be assigned, with his last assignment coming on Dec. 31, 2007. Brown died on Jan. 6, 2010.
The Rev. Louis G. Cook. He was ordained May 31, 1958, and served various parishes in the diocese until Oct. 15, 1970, when he was assigned to Holy Trinity in Litomysl. He also served at Queen of Angels church in Austin in 1970. On March 13, 2000, Cook was assigned to St. Augustine in Austin. He died on Nov. 26, 2004.
The three priests with ties to Dodge County are:
The Rev. Joseph C. Cashman. He was ordained on May 31, 1960, and served various parishes in the diocese until 1992. Among the parishes he served was St. Margaret church in Mantorville, a parish to which he was assigned on June 24, 1970. Cashman had his ministerial privileges suspended in September 1992 and currently is in the process of being removed from the priesthood. That process, known as laicization, is pending in a canonical tribunal or church court.
The Rev. John R. Feiten. He was ordained June 6, 1948, and served at Sacred Heart Catholic Church beginning on June 29, 1990. He moved to St. Anne Hospice in Winona in 1994 and retired from active ministry in June 2000 and died on July 9, 2001.
The Rev. Michael J. Kuisle. Ordained in June 1940, Kuisle resigned from the priesthood in September 1971 and died on Dec. 21 of that same year. Among the parishes in the Winona Diocese to which he was assigned were the churches in Claremont and West Concord, both of which he served from June 15, 1954 to July 26, 1956.
Other priests who served in nearby parishes were:
The Rev. Thomas P. Adamson, who served in Albert Lea from 1967 to 1968.
The Rev. Fedinand L. Kaiser, who served in New Richland from 1952 to 1967.
The Rev. Jack L. Krough, who served St. Augustine in Austin, Pacelli High School in Austin, All Saints in New Richland, St. Joseph in Waldorf, St. Edward in Austin and Our Lady of Loretto in Brownsdale.
The list includes priests who have been “credibly accused,” which means though the case has not necessarily been proven in a court — either civil or canonical — the church believes there is evidence that the abuse occurred.
Phone calls to local parishes were directed to the Winona Diocese.
Joel Hennessy, a spokesman for the diocese, told the Associated Press that Bishop John Quinn hoped that releasing the list demonstrates “the sincere apology of the diocese, and the desire to heal and to begin moving forward.”
The list is the latest such disclosure as Catholic bishops in Minnesota face ongoing legal pressure after years of keeping the names secret. Attorneys for abuse victims had sought the public disclosure of the list, saying it was in the interest of public safety. Earlier this month, the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis named 34 priests accused of abuse.