March 8, 2019
On this first Friday of Lent, the Paulist Fathers release the names of our priests who have been credibly accused of sexual misconduct with minors since 1943.
We release this list so that victims and their families may find healing, justice, and peace. We also do this so that all who worship at our parishes, campus ministries and downtown centers may not wonder if their children will be safe.
On behalf of the Paulist Fathers, I apologize to victims and their families who put their trust in a Paulist only to have that trust violated in such an egregious way. The pain suffered by just one survivor of abuse or misconduct due to actions of a Paulist is one too many.
The Paulist Fathers are deeply committed to safe environments in all the locations we serve, and to professional conduct by all of our priests and lay employees. We have adopted and implemented the Standards for Accreditation out lined by the firm Praesidium through the Conference of Major Superiors of Men (CMSM) (Download PDF).
While the last known credible incident of sexual misconduct of a minor by a Paulist occurred in the mid-1980s, we pledge to remain vigilant that acts like these never occur again.
Some of the names of the attached list have already been made public through websites such as BishopAccountability.org or a particular diocese or archdiocese. We have aggregated these names. Other names have been added from our files or only recently have been reported. This list will be updated should new allegations come forward.
God willing, this transparency will help others who have not yet come forward to do so.
Those made public here for the first time are deceased Paulist Fr. Ronald Burt, deceased Paulist Fr. Thomas Tierney and former Paulist Stephan Johnson.
Anyone who has allegations or concerns about any Paulist Father, whether listed here or not, is encouraged to contact Rev. John Behnke, C.S.P., vice president and safety officer of the Paulist Fathers at (212) 757-8072, or via email at JohnBehnke@Paulist.org.
We also urge those with concerns to contact law enforcement agencies, as well as safe environment officers or victims assistance coordinators in their local diocese or archdiocese.
During this season of Lent, as we pray for all victims of sexual abuse by clergy, especially minors, let us also pray for the healing of our Church. May we work together to ensure a future for our children that is not only safe but full of the knowledge of God’s mercy, love, and justice!
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Fr. Eric Andrews, C.S.P.
The Paulist Fathers