Second allegation of sexual abuse of minor made against former local priest

By David Jenkins
Standard Democrat
November 11, 2019

A second allegation of sexual abuse of a minor has been made against a priest that spent time in the southeast Missouri area.

According to a release from the Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau, a second allegation was made against Fr. William E. Donovan that occurred between 1968 and 1972. Donovan, who died Feb. 9, 1975, is already listed as a clergy against whom prior allegations of the abuse of a minor occurred.

Civil authorities have been notified of the allegation following procedures outlined in diocesan Safe Environment Policies.

Donovan was born in 1930 in Rome, NY and was ordained a priest in 1955 in St. Louis for the Archdiocese of St. Louis. The Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau was formed in 1956 from territory that was prior to 1956, part of the Archdiocese of St. Louis and the Diocese of Kansas City.

Donovan was the assistant pastor at Guardian Angel Parish in Oran, Mo., from 1955-1958 and the assistant pastor at St. Mary of the Annunciation Cathedral in Cape Girardeau, Mo., from 1958-1960. He was the area director of Catholic scouting in Cape Girardeau from 1960-1962 before becoming the pastor at St. John Valley Parish in Mountain View, Mo. and chaplain of Mountain View Memorial Hospital in 1962.

In 1963, he became the area director of Catholic scouting in West Plains, Mo., before taking over as pastor of the St. Ann Parish in Malden, Mo. and the St. Margaret Mary Mission Church in Neelyville, Mo., in 1966. In 1968 he became pastor of the St. Teresa Parish in Glennonville, Mo. and the Sacred Heart Mission Church in Wilhelmina, Mo.



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