Archdiocese alerts parishes about naming clergy accused of abuse

  • Article by: RICHARD MERYHEW , Star Tribune
  • Updated: December 5, 2013 - 7:07 AM

An e-mail from the vicar general says 92 of its churches had at least one of the priests assigned to them over the years. The list will be posted online and printed Thursday.


Diane Plocher, of Mayer, braved the cold and wind along with other protesters to march for the resignation of Archbishop John Nienstedt across the street from the Cathedral of St. Paul in St. Paul, Min., Saturday, November 9, 2013. Plocher's son Shawn was a victim of abuse in the 80s.

Photo: Kyndell Harkness, Star Tribune

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The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis gave notice to all clergy and church trustees Wednesday that it plans to disclose its list of clergy who have been credibly accused of sexually abusing minors.

The e-mail from the Rev. Charles Lacho­witzer, the archdiocese’s vicar general, did not identify how many priests would be on the list, which the archdiocese has said it plans to release Thursday.

Lachowitzer, however, wrote that the archdiocese has mailed notices to 92 parishes where at least one priest on the list had been assigned at one point during his career.

“We expect that most parishes will receive these letters by the end of the day Wednesday, but some may arrive on Thursday,” Lachowitzer said.

Wednesday’s e-mail follows a ruling earlier this week by a Ramsey County district judge ordering the archdiocese and the Diocese of Winona to release the names of 46 priests accused of sexually abusing minors.

The archdiocese has held secret the names of 33 credibly accused abusers since it compiled the list in 2004 and won a 2009 ruling allowing the list to remain private. In court Monday, archdiocesan officials said they were prepared to identify 29 of the 33 priests, but Judge John Van de North ordered all 33 identified by Dec. 17.

The archdiocese said this week that it would release a list Thursday on its website and in the Catholic Spirit newspaper. The Diocese of Winona has not said when it will release its list.


Richard Meryhew • 612-673-4425

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