MN- Church officials admit paying predators

For immediate release: Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 862 7688 home, 314 503 0003 cell,

Catholic officials with the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis admitted today to paying at least nine predator priests.

Their motivation for these payments, we maintain, is self-serving. We’re convinced that these predators know of other misdeeds and crimes by their church supervisors and peers. And we believe that high ranking Catholic officials pay known wrongdoers so those wrongdoers will stay silent about wrongdoing.

Archbishop Nienstadt and his staff know how to keep predators away from innocent children and vulnerable adults: call police promptly, reward – not punish – whistleblowers, give prosecutors all the files about known and suspected predators, put the names, photos and whereabouts of proven, admitted and credibly accused clerics on the archdiocesan website and in parish bulletins, put the predators in a remote, secure treatment centers, and lobby for – not against, reforming archaic, predator-friendly statutes of limitations. This isn’t rocket science. It’s common sense and common decency. But Nienstadt refuses to do most of this.

Nienstadt’s public relations team claims the archbishop pays predators so they won’t re-offend. Huh? Ask yourself: What other institution pays criminals so they don’t commit more crimes?

Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell,, Barbara Dorris (314-862-7688 home, 314-503-0003 cell,, Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747,, Bob Schwiderski (952-471-3422,



Recent statements about the nature of certain payments from the Archdiocese to priests who have been removed from ministry for various forms of misconduct were filled with factual errors and misrepresentations. The facts in each case are unique and they have always been handled on an individual basis. We have always tried to handle these matters responsibly and justly for everyone involved. In recent years, we have endeavored to be even more vigilant in identifying problems and engaging civil authorities whenever necessary. Most of the cases of clergy misconduct that have been reported in the news are from as many as 10 years ago or more. Over the last 25 years, as we have previously disclosed, a number of priests have been removed for various forms of misconduct. To help ensure that the offending priest does not re-offend, he must have financial, therapeutic and spiritual support. The Archdiocese has sought to provide that support, where necessary. That assistance has also included assigning an individual to monitor the life and activities of those offenders. Financial and other forms of assistance to priest offenders are also mandated to all clergy under Catholic Church law. The Archdiocese also provides various forms of assistance to individuals harmed by the misconduct of its priests. We've made it clear in all of our communications to victims that we will make such assistance available. Most often, that assistance is in the form of helping them with the expense of therapy or other means for them to survive their experiences. Often, that assistance is provided in cooperation with legal counsel for the victim. The most important fact is this: our standard is zero tolerance of sexual abuse of a minor or vulnerable adult by priests and absolute accountability. The Task Force to review priestly misconduct, which the Archbishop called for last Friday in a letter to priests and lay leaders, will have within its purview a full review of misconduct cases. Sexual abuse of a minor or vulnerable adult is a crime, it is morally repugnant and it will not be tolerated. # # #

STATEMENT October 1, 2013

CONTACT - Jim Accurso Media and Public Relations Manager T: 651-291-4480M:

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