IOWA CITY (AP) — At least 28 priests are credibly accused of having sexually abused more than 100 boys and girls while working for a Roman Catholic diocese in Iowa, church officials announced Monday.
The Diocese of Sioux City identified those 28 priests as it published a long-awaited list of those who have been the subject of credible allegations of sexual abuse involving minors.
The list included about 5 percent of the priests who have worked for the diocese at some point since its inception in 1902. A 29th priest has been accused but his name is being withheld pending an appeal to the Vatican.
“Publishing this list is the beginning of a new chapter in the history of our diocese,” said Bishop R. Walker Nickless, who released the list at a press conference. “We want it to usher in a climate of openness and transparency, resulting in the protection of our youth and accountability for clergy and church leaders.”
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He said releasing information about the church’s “shameful history” might help some victims heal while reopening old wounds for others.
Advocates for abuse victims had long urged the diocese to release such a list, as two of Iowa’s three other Roman Catholic dioceses have done. The diocese had promised to do so in November after an investigation by the Associated Press exposed its 32-year cover-up of the Rev. Jerome Coyle, who had allegedly confessed to abusing more than 50 boys over a 20-year period.
The diocese, which operates churches and schools throughout northwestern Iowa, urged victims to come forward at that time. Its review board has spent recent weeks reviewing files and weighing the credibility of allegations.
The diocese said the alleged abuse took place between 1948 and 1995 and involved 106 individuals who have come forward to make claims. Additional complaints of abuse have been made more recently, but none have been deemed credible by police or a church review board, the diocese said.
All but six of the priests on the list have died. Those who are still living are not involved in the ministry or active with youths, and they have been stripped of their ability to celebrate Mass or represent themselves as priests, the diocese said.
Diocese officials acknowledged that the list is probably incomplete because additional victims have not come forward. For instance, the diocese said that it was aware of 13 victims of Coyle, even though he allegedly confessed to abusing dozens more.
The list included 39 victims of the Rev. George McFadden, whose abuse has long been documented and spawned an array of civil lawsuits, and 11 victims of the Rev. Peter Murphy. More than half of the identified priests, however, have only one known accuser.
The list does not include former Sioux City Bishop Lawrence Soens, even though he allegedly abused boys while he was a priest and principal. Soens, who retired as bishop in 1998, is not included on the list because the allegations date to when he worked for a different diocese.
The list also did not include a priest who was removed from the ministry in 2017 after being accused of improperly touching a girl’s leg during confession, or an active priest who chased after an adult parishioner in 2013 while naked and yelling about raping her.
Still, the list represents a more comprehensive accounting than statistics that were released by now-Cardinal Daniel DiNardo when he was Sioux City bishop in 2004. DiNardo, who is now archbishop of Galveston-Houston and leads the church’s response to the sexual abuse crisis, told Sioux City parishioners in 2004 that the diocese was aware of 33 allegations against 10 priests since 1950.
The diocese says it had paid $4.7 million in legal settlements to 58 individuals since 2002.
Clergy named in Archdiocese of Omaha's report
The names of those in the Archdiocese of Omaha's report on clergy who it says had been credibly accused of misconduct or abuse with minors since 1978. Five clergy — John Fiala, Deacon Emilio Morales Jordan, Francis Nigli, Andrew Syring and Deacon Duane Thome — were named in claims that came after 2002. Names link to World-Herald coverage when applicable. Source: report.archomaha.org
|John Fiala||Papillion St. Columbkille, Norfolk Sacred Heart, Omaha St. Joan of Arc, Omaha St. Peter, Omaha Christ the King, Spencer St. Mary, Wisner St. Joseph, Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity.|
|Deacon Emilio Morales Jordan||No parishes listed|
|Francis Nigli||Omaha St. Vincent de Paul, Papillion St. Columbkille, O'Neill St. Patrick; Amelia St. Joseph, Omaha St. Wenceslaus.|
|Andrew Syring||Schuyler Divine Mercy, Omaha St. Bernard, Omaha. St. Wenceslaus, West Point St. Mary; Monterey, St. Boniface; Aloys, St. Aloysius; St. Charles, St. Anthony.|
|Deacon Duane Thome||No parishes listed|
|Robert Allgaier||Norfolk Sacred Heart, Ralston St. Gerald|
|Richard Arkfeld||Omaha St. Rose, Atkinson St. Joseph, Omaha Holy Cross, Clyde St. Patrick, Lynch Assumption; Niobrara, St. William, Ewing St. Peter of Alcantara, Randolph St. Jane Frances de Chantal, St. Charles St. Anthony, Coleridge St. Michael; Belden St. Mary, Newcastle St. Peter; Ponca St. Joseph|
|John Buckson||Omaha Our Lady of Guadalupe, Omaha St. Francis of Assisi, Omaha St. Agnes, Omaha Our Lady of Guadalupe, Schuyler St. Augustine|
|Donald Cleary||Omaha Holy Cross, Omaha Christ the King, Omaha St. Peter, Omaha St. Patrick, O'Neill St. Patrick, Fordyce St. John; Constance St. Joseph, Wayne St. Mary, Fullerton St. Peter; Clarks, St. Peter, North Bend St. Charles Borromeo; Snyder, St. Leo the Great, Omaha St. Elizabeth Ann Seton|
|Franklin Dvorak||Norfolk Sacred Heart, O'Neill St. Patrick, Spencer St. Mary, Cleridge St. Michael; Mission of Belden, Hartington Holy Trinity, Omaha St. Wencesalus, Omaha St. Elizabeth Ann Seton.|
|John Feeney (Extern)||No parishes listed|
|Joseph Finch||Omaha Our Lady of Lourdes, Boys Town Immaculate Conception (Dowd Chapel), Archdiocese of the Military Services, Diocese of Albany|
|James Gaughan (Extern)||Omaha St. Pius X, Hartington Holy Trinity, Bellevue St. Bernadette, Omaha St. Thomas More, Duncan St. Stanislaus, Diocese of Mandeville, Jamaica.|
|Gill, Edward||Omaha St. Peter, Coleridge St. Michael, Norfolk Sacred Heart, Omaha St. Agnes, Plainview St. Paul, Butte Sts. Peter & Paul, Madison St. Leonard, Atkinson St. Joseph, Central City St. Michael Stanton St. Peter, Osmond St. Mary of the Seven Dolors, St. Edward St. Edward|
|Tom Glennon (SSC)||No parishes listed.|
|Joseph Henry (OAR)||No parishes listed|
|Daniel Herek||Omaha Assumption, Omaha Christ the King, Omaha St. Joan of Arc, Omaha Mary Our Queen, Omaha St. Peter, Omaha St. Bernard, Coleridge St. Michael, Belden St. Mary, Beemer Holy Cross, Omaha St. Ann, Omaha St. Richard.|
|Joseph Hiepvan Ho (Extern)||No parishes listed.|
|Michael Kelly||Elgin St. Boniface, Omaha St. Cecilia Cathedral, Omaha St. Peter, Randolph St. Jane Frances de Chantal, Battle Creek St. Patrick, Neligh St. Francis of Assisi, Clearwater St. Theresa of Avila, Laurel St. Mary, Genoa St. Rose of Lima, Lyons St. Joseph.|
|Daniel Kenney (SJ)||No parishes listed.|
|Jay Kruse||Fremont St. Patrick, Omaha Roncalli High School, Omaha St. Pius X, Wynot Sacred Heart; St. James, St. Philip & James, Cedar Catholic High School, Ewing St. Peter of Alcantara; Deloit Township St. John, Pope John XXIII High School, Verdigre St. Wenceslaus, Niobrara St. William, O'Neill St. Patrick, Amelia St. Joseph.|
|Larry Toms Kulangara (SSP)||No parishes listed|
|Duane Lukes||Omaha St. Stanislaus, Dodge St. Wenceslaus, Omaha St. Pius X, Lindsay Holy Family, Omaha St. Ann, Norfolk Sacred Heart, Niobrara St. William, St. Edward St. Edward, Osmond St. Mary of the Seven Dolors, Norfolk Immaculata Monastery.|
|Aloysius McMahon||Omaha St. Wencesalus, Boys Town Immaculate Conception (Dowd Chapel), Mission Work in Chile, Boys Town Immaculate Conception (Dowd Chapel), Rummel High School, Pierce St. Joseph, Mission Work in Peru, Wisner St. Joseph, Omaha St. Frances Cabrini, Omaha St. Joan of Arc, Omaha St. Peter, Mission Work in Ecuador|
|Mark Merkel||Fremont St. Patrick, Omaha St. Cecilia Cathedral, O'Neill St. Patrick, West Point Central Catholic School, Beemer Holy Cross|
|Anthony Palmese (OAR)||No parishes listed|
|Roland Peschel||Dodge St. Wenceslaus, Creighton St. Ludger, Omaha St. Mary, Omaha St. Bernard, Omaha St. James, Omaha St. Margaret Mary, Randolph St. Jane Frances de Chantal, O'Neill St. Patrick, Amelia St. Joseph, Emmett Epiphany, Omaha St. Bernadette, Fremont St. Patrick, Olean Sacred Heart, Ralston St. Gerald|
|Anthony Petrusic||Omaha Sts. Peter & Paul, Ryan High School, Omaha St. Catherine Hospital, Omaha, Notre Dame Convent, Omaha Sts. Peter & Paul, Omaha St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, Croation Catholic Union of US & Canada|
|Deacon Tom Purnell||No parishes listed|
|John Rizzo||Omaha St. Ann, Omaha Holy Cross, Mission Work in Chile, Boys Town Immaculate Conception, Dixon St. Anne, Genoa St. Rose, Ponca St. Joseph, Waterbury Immaculate Conception, Menominee St. Boniface, Stanton St. Peter, Creighton St. Ludger, Clarks St. Peter, Omaha St. Peter, Omaha St. Ann|
|Perry Robinson (SJ)||No parishes listed.|
|Al Salanitro||Omaha St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, Omaha Holy Cross, Laurel St. Mary, Dixon St. Anne, Blair St. Francis Borgia, Bellevue St. Bernadette|
|Thomas Sellentin||Omaha St. Stanislaus, Elgin St. Boniface, Omaha St. Joan of Arc, West Point St. Mary, Lindsay Holy Family, Omaha Blessed Sacrament, Spencer St. Mary, Fullerton St. Peter, Menominee St. Boniface, Howells Sts. Peter & Paul and St. John, North Bend St. Charles Borromeo, Snyder St. Leo the Great|
|John Starostka||Omaha St. Francis of Assisi, Creigthon St. Ludger, Omaha St. Philip Neri, Omaha St. Stanislaus, Platte Center St. Joseph, Newcastle St. Peter, Omaha St. Cecilia Cathedral, Cedar Rapids St. Anthony, Primrose St. Mary, Omaha St. Francis of Assisi|
|Robert Steinhausen||Omaha Holy Cross, South Sioux City St. Michael, Spencer St. Mary, Norfolk Sacred Heart, Papillion St. Columbkille.|
|Patrick Henry||Papillion St. Columbkille, Maryknoll Missions, South Sioux City St. Michael, Maryknoll Missions, Diocese of Cleveland|
|Deacon Robert Pickett||No parishes listed|
|Jeff Zyla||South Sioux City St. Michael, Omaha St. Leo, Petersburg St. John the Baptist, Raeville St. Bonaventure, Wisner St. Joseph, West Point Central Catholic High School, Aloys St. Aloysius|