Bishop names 33 priests, religious 'credibly abused of sexual abuse of a minor'

Bishop Shawn McKnight (File)

Bishop Shawn McKnight Bishop McKnight released the names of 33 priests and religious brothers credibly accused and/or removed from ministry in the diocese.

One on the list has been criminally convicted. He said the most recent credible report of physical abuse by clergy in the diocese came in 1997.

“As of today, there has not ever been a credible accusation of sexual abuse of a minor against any clergy or religious now serving in the Diocese of Jefferson City," Bishop McKnight said.

The list included 25 priests from the diocese, three priests from other areas who previously served in the Jefferson City diocese, and five members of religious orders; fourteen of the 33 men named are dead.

The bishop said the announcement would serve as an update to the public on work to bring greater transparency and healing for the Diocese of Jefferson City.

“Although the incidents are in the past, the pain caused is still a present reality for the survivors of abuse and their loved ones,” Bishop McKnight said in a release. “Today there can be no secrets in our diocese. I pledge to put the care of victims, their loved ones and their communities first and foremost. Our long standing Catholic social teachings require that we afford a preferential option for the poor; and this is most especially the case for those who have been victimized by clergy of our own Church.”

The list of names can be found in the document below:

The diocese has spent $4.7 million since July 1, 2003 on expenses related to the cases, in addition to an estimated $1.5 million from its founding in 1956 to June 30, 2003.

The funds have been provided by donors “who understand our preferential option for survivors of abuse,” Bishop McKnight said in a release, along with funds from the sale of the diocesan minor seminary, the diocese’s fund for infirm priests, other dioceses and religious orders and insurance.

Bishop McKnight referenced the possibility that more victims may come forward. “Today we are publishing what we know,” he said.

He encouraged people to report any suspected abuse or victimization by someone representing the Catholic Church to the Missouri Child Abuse & Neglect hotline (1-800-392-3738), the Missouri Adult Abuse & Neglect Hotline (1-800-392-0210), and the diocese’s Victim Assistance Coordinator, Nancy Hoey, at 573-694-3199 or

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off