Abuse claims kept secret allowed priest to minister and teach sex ed

When beloved priest Harry Walsh retired two years ago, parishioners of St. Henry’s Catholic Church in Monticello, Minn., decorated a VFW hall with paper shamrocks and musical notes to say goodbye.

They sang, gave speeches and cried. Walsh, then 77, had served as the parish’s music minister for nearly a decade.

"You developed close personal relationships with everybody and that gave us all the ability to trust you with all of our personal lives," one person wrote on a tribute website for the Irish-born priest. "You have blessed this community immeasurably."

But Walsh had a secret. He’d been accused of sexually abusing...

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