Fallout just beginning after Archdiocese releases priest list


The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis is weathering an ever-growing din of criticism, even after church officials on Thursday released a long-secret list of priests "credibly accused" of abuse – an attempt to begin rebuilding parishioner trust.

But fallout from the list's release Thursday likely has just begun.

St. Paul police are now calling for more victims of priests on the list to step forward, the Star Tribune reports. And victims' advocates are prodding the church to release even more names of priests they suspect of abuse who were left off the list.

The list is an unprecedented disclosure of information related to priest abuse by the Catholic church in Minnesota. The 30 priests on the list served at a total of 92 parishes – about half the 188 in the archdiocese – between 1950 and 2013, MPR reported. Some have been found guilty of abuse, while others have not been through the justice system. About one-third are dead.

About three-fourths of the priests on the list were known to the public through media reports and lawsuits, but at least seven names were kept secret for decades, MPR News reported.

MPR has the list, with additional information about the priests, plus photos and their church assignments.

FOX 9 looked at one town – Faribault – where seven priests on the list where shuffled through churches. St. Paul lawyer Jeff Anderson says that at least 15 men were victims of the seven. Anderson also says the Archdiocese's list is incomplete and he alleges the church is still shielding secret files.

Victims said the list is way overdue, and the church still has a long way to go to heal deep, long-lasting wounds, MPR News reported. "If they had only done the right thing back when things were first reported, we wouldn't be here," Al Michaud said in the FOX report.

The Pioneer Press reports that Jim Keenan, who sued former priest Thomas Adamson for abuse he suffered in 1967 said the release of the list is the "right step ... but a tiny step."

Yet another list, from the Archdiocese of Winona, is expected to be released by Dec. 17.

The Archdiocese may ultimately get more pressure from the Vatican. Pope Francis announced Thursday that he would establish a commission to advise him on protecting children from pedophile priests and how to counsel victims, his first concrete step to address the ever-widening scandal, the New York Times reported.

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