St. John Vianney High School nurse was charged Thursday after confessing to child sex crimes.
(For Immediate Release May 8, 2023)
A former nurse at St. John Vianney High School was charged Thursday after confessing to child sex crimes. St. John Vianney is a private, all-male Catholic college preparatory school in Kirkwood, Missouri. Erin Foerstel was charged with two felonies: one count of second-degree statutory sodomy and one count of sexual contact with a student.
While we mourn for the harm inflicted on this young boy, we are glad to learn that the perpetrator has apparently admitted her crimes and been arrested. It can be extremely difficult for any survivor to come forward and talk about their abuse, especially if their perpetrator is a trusted authority figure working in the Catholic school system. It is even more difficult at a young age.
In April, the school sent a letter to parents saying Forestel was removed from the campus for "engaging inappropriately with a student" and violating the school's social media policy by "privately communicating" with boys. Vianney President Rick Davis and Principal Ian Mulligan provided additional information in an email Thursday, noting that Foerstel had worked at St. John Vianney from August 2020 until April 24, when she was fired.
We think that it is important to note that an average of two arrests per month of trusted figures in Catholic institutions is still a reality. BishopAccountability, the largest public library of information on the Catholic sex abuse scandal, has documented over 3,000 more perpetrators since 2004. This number, added to the initial 4,300 plus names acknowledged by Church officials in the John Jay Report, brings the staggering total to over 7,000 abusers, and this figure is growing monthly.
SNAP is calling on officials from the high school, the Archdiocese of St. Louis, and the Marianist religious order to provide a full report to parents and the public about what they know about Forestel and her nursing career: where she trained, where was her practicum, where she worked previously, to which sports teams she was assigned during her tenure at St. John Vianney, and if there were any previous concerns or complaints. The openness and transparency promised in the 2002 Dallas Charter demands nothing less.
CONTACT: Mike McDonnell, SNAP Communications Manager ([email protected] 267-261-0578) Zach Hiner, SNAP Executive Director ([email protected], 517-974-9009) Shaun Dougherty, SNAP Board President, (814-341-8386 [email protected])
(SNAP, the Survivors Network, has been providing support for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings for 30 years. We have more than 25,000 survivors and supporters in our network. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)