SNAP FACT SHEET (1/14/14)
Child molesting clerics who have worked/lived in Chicago
Each has received little or virtually no public attention in the area
Most have molested children elsewhere in one case, dozens of them
And none have ever been disclosed by Cardinal Francis George or his staff
(None of these names appear as proven, admitted or credibly accused abusers on the Chicago archdiocesan website. Nearly all of them have attracted no public attention in the Chicagoland area, even though some of them have molested dozens of kids elsewhere.)
Each has come to SNAP’s attention over just the past few months. All have been publicly exposed by media elsewhere.
In each case, SNAP believes Chicago Catholic officials (archdiocesan and religious order) should have disclosed the allegations and/or settlements against the clerics. And Chicago Catholic officials should now be reaching out to others who saw, suspected or suffered their crimes.
The names below are a few of the dozens and dozens of religious order clerics who worked or live/lived - and sometimes molested - in Chicago. But their known or alleged crimes and their years in the Chicago area are being kept hidden by archdiocesan and religious order officials. (Roughly 1/3 of US priests belong to such orders, including Jesuits, Marianists, and Franciscans.)
Information about most of these predators can be found at BishopAccountability.org (but likely NOT in the Chicago archdiocesan section, since many of their crimes took place in other cities, states or countries).
--Fr. John J. Burke
He is accused of molesting at least one child in Kankakee in the 19___s, according to newspaper reports.
Burke spent most of his long clerical career in the Chicagoland area, working at three assignments (maybe more) in the Chicago archdiocese. Two were in Arlington Heights: - at the Viatorian Provincial Center () from 1983-1986 and at the Viatorian Mission House (1115 E. Euclid Ave.) from 1961-1962. Burke also worked at St. Viator Parish, 4170 Addison St. in Chicago from 1944-1952.
He was ordained in Boston and worked in at least two other dioceses besides Chicago: Savannah, Georgia (St. Thomas Vocational School from 1943-1944) and in Joliet (St. George Parish in Bourbonnais from 1962-1983, St. Patrick’s Parish in Kankakee from 1952-1961, and Kankakee State Boys Camp for troubleed boys - from 1954-1966).
He died in 1986 at age 78 but is still memorialized glowingly on a church website run by the Viatorians, a Chicago-based religious order to which he belonged:http://viatorians.com/vc-memorial-us/burke/
There's a clear photo of him there too.
--Fr. Ignatius M. Burrill
For 25 years, Burrill was a faculty member and counselor at Loyola Academy in Wilmette. In 8/11, the Jesuit Province of Chicago-Detroit announced that a former student at St. Ignatius High School in Cleveland had come forward to allege abuse by Burrill between 1952-1956 when the priest worked at the school. In 4/12, Boston attorney Mitch Garabedian announced a settlement of one child sex abuse case against Burrill.
He also taught at St. Mary of the Lake Seminary and worked in Michigan, Indiana and Kansas.
Burrill died in March, 1987. He also worked in Cleveland. His photo is available at BishopAccountability.org
--Br. Joseph C. Lundowski
In 2010, 150+ adults settled their cases charging that they were molested as children by Lundowsk in Alaska. Lundowski was a Chicago native who returned to Chicago in the 1980s and worked roughly 15 years at the Pacific Garden Mission, (1458 S. Canal, 312 492 9410, http://www.pgm.org/ )
Despite the dozens of allegations, Lundowski's name has never appeared in Chicago news media, as best SNAP can determine. One news outlet called him the “the most notorious of all the accused (Alaska clergy) abusers.”
Lundowski's Alaska victims were represented by Anchorage attorney Ken Roosa (907 276 2744) and California attorney John Manly.
Lundowski passed away in 1996 and presented himself as both a Trappist and a Jesuit.
--Fr. Ronan C. Liles (a.k.a. Charles R. or Charles B. Liles)
Last month, Fr. Liles was publicly accused of child sex crimes in Minneapolis. Catholic officials there disclosed for the first time that Fr. Liles had also worked in Chicago in 1978.
In 1997, Liles was accused in a lawsuit of sexually abusing two brothers at a Boy Scout camp when they were 11 and 12 years old (from 1969 to 1975). That case was dismissed due to the statute of limitations but church officials settled with another victim of Fr. Liles for $450,000 in 2006. Often, Fr. Liles abused kids with one of his colleagues, Brother Edmund Frost.
Fr. Liles, now deceased, was ordained in 1969 and belonged to a Catholic religious order called the Dominicans.
--Fr. Victor Phelan
In September, Fr. Victor Phelan was “named publicly as an alleged abuser for the first time” according to the Associated Press.
Fr. Phelan was “outed” by Boston attorney Mitchell Garabedian (617-523-6250, 617-388-5252, firstname.lastname@example.org). Garabedian reached a settlement with Catholic officials on behalf of a victim who was sexually assaulted by Fr. Phelan in Plainfield NJ in the Newark Archdiocese in 1977.
Fr. Phelan was ordained in 1971 and was in Chicago in 1977 and 1978, according to the Official Catholic Directory. He also worked in two African nations: Burkina Faso and Ghana. Phelan belongs to a Catholic religious order called the Society of Missionaries in Africa (a.k.a. “the White Missionaries”). His full work history is here: http://www.bishopaccountability.org/assign/Phelan_Victor_w.f_.htm
--Sister Agnes Santomassimo
As part of a civil abuse lawsuit settlement, Sister Agnes Santomassimo was exposed as a sex offender who molested in California. She worked twice at the now-shuttered St. Francis Xavier Cabrini Hospital in Chicago (from 1950 to 1952 as the Accounting and Personnel Director and from 1964 to 1965 in the Admitting Office). She also worked as a kindergarten teacher and supervisor of young girls.
In July, as part of a $660,000,000 settlement in Los Angeles, two pages of her personnel file were made public and were posted here: http://www.lorpb.com/documents/Agnes-File.pdf
Sr. Agnes’ victim was represented by Los Angeles attorney Ray Boucher (213-596-6000, 310-854-4444,email@example.com).
She also worked at Mother Cabrini Hospital in New York City and Santa Cabrini Hospital in Montreal, Canada
She belonged/belongs to the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (aka The Cabrini Sisters).
--Fr. William Paiz
In a civil child sex abuse and cover up lawsuit filed on 1/31/12, Paiz is accused of abusing a child between 1982-1987. During that time, he was assigned to All Saints Church in Fort Worth and then as religion teacher at Nolan Catholic High School where the alleged victim was a student. He left the Fort Worth Diocese around 1987 and went on to work in California and Nevada for many years. He was transferred to the Claretian provincial house in the Chicago area in 2010 after one of his victims complained to Catholic officials. The lawsuit settled 11/21/12.
--Fr. Eusebio Pantoja
He was ordained in Mexico. In 2003, he was sued and put on leave for alleged abusing a 14 year old youth in the 1970s. After working in Chicago, Pantoja worked in New Jersey and Texas and then spent nearly a decade working as priest in Mexico.
--Fr. Thomas Paramo
In May 2005, a woman filed suit accusing the Claretians of protecting Paramo after he abused her from ages 11-15 (beginning in 1966). Paramo was assigned to Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in Chicago at the time. Paramo died in a nursing home in 2004 but the woman had confronted him there before his death. A second accuser has also contacted the woman's attorney.
SNAP will be Representing Clergy Abuse Survivors in Rome!
We are taking the fight to Rome and are standing up for all survivors on a world stage! From February 19-25, Board President Tim Lennon, Seattle Leader Mary Dispenza, Los Angeles Leader Esther Hatfield Miller and Austin Leader Carol Midboe will be traveling to Rome for Pope Francis' Papal Abuse Summit.
If you are a member of the media and looking to get in touch with these survivors while in Rome, click here for our media advisory and contact information. If you are interested in connecting with a survivor in the US from your area of coverage, please contact one of the SNAP leaders in the US listed below:
- East Coast/DC: Becky Ianni (SNAPvirginia@cox.net, 703-801-6044)
- Midwest/Chicago: Zach Hiner (firstname.lastname@example.org, 517-974-9009)
- Midwest/St. Louis: David Clohessy (email@example.com, 314314-566-9790)
- West Coast / San Francisco: Melanie Sakoda (firstname.lastname@example.org, 925-708-6175)
If you are looking to help spread the word about the importance of this summit and for survivors to be heard, add your voice to the conversation on social media using the hashtag #PBC2019. Be sure to follow SNAP on twitter and Facebook and share our posts, add your comments, and let the world know that we are watching!Learn More