“Victim refuses to pursue charges” & related articles

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GCSO investigation closed in priest case

Greenwood Index Journal

23 April 2013

By Scott J. Bryan

Hayden Vaverek

Hayden Vaverek

An alleged victim of sexual misconduct of a minor by a Catholic priest will not pursue criminal charges, a Greenwood County Sheriff’s Office report released Monday indicated.

The report, filed by the GCSO’s investigations unit, said the 32-year-old Simpsonville victim, who now lives in New York, signed a criminal investigation waiver, indicating “he did not want to further pursue the investigation.”

GCSO investigator Kenny Downing said any adult can sign a waiver not to pursue charges. Minors cannot; they must have a parent or guardian’s signature.

The allegation stemmed from a meeting the GCSO had with Diocese of Charleston investigator Paul Buceti, who met with investigators March 8.

On March 10, the Diocese of Charleston issued a release stating Father Hayden Vaverek was placed on administrative leave and had his priestly faculties withdrawn after “an allegation of sexual misconduct of a minor dating back more than 15 years.”

Vaverek served at several parishes and schools in South Carolina, including those in Greenville, Simpsonville, Anderson, Greenwood, McCormick, Myrtle Beach, Garden City, Moncks Corner, Bonneau and Hilton Head Island.

________________________________

Allegation of sexual misconduct of a minor made against Father Hayden Vaverek

The Georgetown Times (gtowntimes.com)

Published on 3/10/2013

CHARLESTON — An allegation of sexual misconduct of a minor dating back more than 15 years has been made against Father Hayden Vaverek, the Diocese of Charleston announced in a press release on Sunday, March 10.

Per diocesan policy, Father Vaverek has been placed on administrative leave and his priestly faculties withdrawn. Church officials have notified law enforcement authorities about the allegation and are cooperating with them fully, the press release stated.
Officials stated that the reported allegation indicates the alleged misconduct occurred while Father Vaverek was pastor at Our Lady of Lourdes in Greenwood. No members of that parish were involved in the reported allegation, according to the release.

Father Vaverek served at several parishes and schools around the state including: Greenville, Simpsonville, Anderson, Greenwood, McCormick, Myrtle Beach, Garden City, Moncks Corner, Bonneau, and Hilton Head Island.

The Diocese of Charleston encourages all victims and those who have knowledge of any sexual misconduct to contact civil authorities in their area. To receive help and guidance from the diocese, contact Sister Sandra Makowski at the Chancery in Charleston at (843) 853-2130, ext. 209.
Bishop Robert E. Guglielmone asks that people pray for all victims of abuse and for their families.

______________________________

Update: Diocese Releases Statement on Former Simpsonville Priest’s Alleged Sexual Misconduct

Previous pastor and administrator of St. Mary Magdalene, Father Hayden Vaverek, accused of alleged sexual misconduct dating back years while at

MauldinPatch

11 March 2013

 

Update: In the wake of accusations that have surfaced alleging that former St. Mary Magdalene priest and administrator, Father Hayden Vaverek, engaged in alleged sexual misconduct many years ago while at another church, the Diocese of Charleston released the following statement on Sunday.

The full statement, which implies the alleged misconduct took place outside the church, reads:

“An allegation of sexual misconduct of a minor dating back more than 15 years has been made against Father Hayden Vaverek. Per diocesan policy, Father Vaverek must be placed on administrative leave and his priestly faculties withdrawn. Diocesan officials have notified law enforcement authorities about this allegation and are fully cooperating with them.

Father Vaverek served at several parishes and schools in South Carolina including those in: Greenville, Simpsonville, Anderson, Greenwood, McCormick, Myrtle Beach, Garden City, Moncks Corner, Bonneau, and Hilton Head Island. The reported allegation indicates the alleged misconduct occurred while Father Vaverek was pastor at Our Lady of Lourdes in Greenwood; however, no parishioners of that parish were involved in the reported allegation.

The Diocese of Charleston encourages all victims and those who have knowledge of any sexual misconduct to contact civil authorities in their area. To receive help and guidance from the diocese, please contact Sister Sandra Makowski at the Chancery in Charleston at (843) 853-2130 x209.

The Most Reverend Robert E. Guglielmone, Bishop of Charleston, asks everyone to pray for all victims of abuse and for their families.”

Last week, a man who was representing the catholic church approached an investigator at the Greenwood County Sheriff’s Office, according to a WSPA report. He reportedly told investigators that a sexual incident involving a minor occurred years ago at Our Lady of Lourdes in Greenwood with Father Hayden Vaverek, who later served a stint as priest and administrator at St. Mary Magdalene in Simpsonville. Deputies said the victim now lives out of state and had someone from the catholic church meet with the Sheriff’s Office to make a report.

Greenwood County deputies said Father Vaverek is in Rome, and have been unable to interview him, according to the report.

Vaverek is the 12th priest in the Charleston Diocese to be publicly accused of sexual misconduct, according to BishopAccountability.org.

Stay with Patch for more details as they develop.

Original article: Father Hayden Vaverek, a former priest and administrator of St. Mary Magdalene Catholic Church in Simpsonville, has been accused of alleged sexual misconduct, according to a news report.

Vaguely mentioning an unnamed and uncited report, WYFF said that Vaverek allegedly engaged in unspecified sexual misconduct dating back more than 15 years while he was pastor at Our Lady of Lourdes in Greenwood.

The Diocese of Charleston reportedly placed Vaverek on administrative leave. Meanwhile, potential victims of the priest’s alleged misconduct are encouraged to contact local authorities, the report said.

Father Vaverek received a degree in criminal justice from Texas State University-San Marcos and attended seminary at Mount St. Mary’s in Emmitsburg, Md. He was ordained in 1994.

His assignments have included parochial vicar at St. Andrew Church in Myrtle Beach, and pastor at St. Joseph Church and School in Anderson, Our Lady of Lourdes in Greenwood, St. Michael in Garden City, St. Philip Benizi in Moncks Corner, Holy Family on Hilton Head Island and St. Mary Magdalene in Simpsonville, where he was appointed by the diocese in 2008.

According to his profile on the Linkedin social network, he is currently a Development Officer of the Catholic Near East Welfare Association, a papal agency for humanitarian and pastoral support based in New York City.

_____________________________

Priest with Upstate ties faces sexual misconduct allegations

WYFF4.com

UPDATED 7:54 AM EDT Mar 11, 2013

Father Hayden

GREENVILLE, S.C. —A priest with ties to the Upstate is accused of sexual misconduct dating back more than 15 years.

Authorities say someone went to police last week and said Father Hayden Vaverek assaulted the person about 15 years ago when Father Vaverek was pastor at Our Lady of Lourdes in Greenwood.

Greenwood County deputies confirmed Sunday, that they had been contacted by a third party about the allegations, but said their official investigation had not started because the alleged victim was now living in New York state.

Deputies also said that right now there are no pending charges in the case.

Throughout his time in the Upstate, Father Vaverek spent time at several parishes in Simpsonville, Greenville, and Anderson.

The Diocese of Charleston also said Father Vaverek had spent time at parishes in McCormick, Myrtle Beach, Garden City, Monks Corner, Bonneau, and Hilton Head Island

Per the Diocese of Charleston’s policy, Father Vaverek was placed on administrative leave.

Investigators say Vaverek was in Rome when the allegation was made and has not been interviewed.

Any potential victims are encouraged to contact local authorities.

________________________________

Aiming higher, Father Vaverek serves God and country

Father Hayden J. Vaverek, chaplain, U.S. Air Force Reserves, lieutenant colonel, pilotANDERSON—Father Hayden J. Vaverek always had an idea that he would become a priest, even though he explored other careers.

“When I was in fifth grade, it’s all I ever talked about being,” he said.

“When I was in high school, I helped run a catering business. I went from that to working at a travel agency while I was in college. I was a good caterer. I was a good travel agent. But the thing I always came back to was the idea that ‘you have to become a priest.’”

Father Vaverek is now pastor at St. Joseph Church and School in Anderson. In a telephone interview with The Miscellany, he said his vocation was nurtured by his parents, Sheila and Milton Vaverek, and the spiritual upbringing they provided their seven children while raising them in Michigan and Texas.

“The profound faith of my parents was not only taught to us in words, but was shown to us through their lives,” he said. “They always made sure we had really good examples of holy people around us, including priests and religious sisters.”

It turned out that the Vaverek family was rich with vocations. Three of his brothers became priests and serve parishes in Texas.

Father Vaverek received a degree in criminal justice from Texas State University-San Marcos and attended seminary at Mount St. Mary’s in Emmitsburg, Md. He was ordained in 1994.

His assignments have included parochial vicar at St. Andrew Church in Myrtle Beach, and pastor at Our Lady of Lourdes in Greenwood, St. Michael in Garden City, St. Philip Benizi in Moncks Corner, Holy Family on Hilton Head Island and St. Mary Magdalene in Simpsonville. He is also diocesan spiritual director for the Cursillo movement.

The busy priest has another title: Lieutenant colonel. Father Vaverek has served in the U.S. Air Force Reserves for 21 years, and is the staff chaplain for the 22nd Air Force.

One weekend a month, he travels to different air bases, helping to oversee the spiritual care of more than 26,000 airmen assigned at 13 bases. He serves in the military by permission of the bishop.

“I help the Chaplain Corps personnel at those bases, mentoring them in their ministry and helping them to overcome obstacles,” he said. “By being a reservist, that gives the Air Force the availability of a Catholic priest in case of necessity, and also the diocese has me as a priest in the parish.”

He had a desire to serve in the armed forces since childhood, he said, because of the many military retirees he knew in Texas.

“I’ve always had a great love for my country, and the military fit in with a prevailing theme of service that was part of my vocation,” he said.

As a reservist, Father Vaverek has traveled to Saudi Arabia, Germany, Afghanistan and Iraq to visit military personnel who didn’t have a resident Catholic chaplain. He also helped in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

“The experience has taught me that God’s people need to have the word proclaimed and the benefit of the sacraments, even if it’s in a place that’s not really convenient,” he said. “I’ve said Mass in some pretty unconventional places. There’s a picture somewhere of me saying Mass on a stack of boxes.”

Military service helps him to be a better parish priest, he said.

“When you serve in the military, you realize how good life really is, how valuable life is, and you get a greater appreciation of some of the comforts we have,” he said. “I’ve slept on the floor of a lot of aircraft and been with people who are doing things that aren’t any fun, who are doing them out of a sense of service. That inspires me to realize how important service is back home in the parish, the importance of the continuing message of God’s love and forgiveness.”

Father Vaverek said the Air Force has trained him in conflict resolution, problem-solving and leadership development. Lessons he can bring to St. Joseph.

Currently, he’s teaching a Lenten series, “A Catholic Study of Stephen Covey’s Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.” He said the book has been used for decades to train leaders in the secular world, but it also has important lessons for Catholics.

“Covey’s seven habits don’t promote any particular faith, but when you study them from a Catholic perspective, and put the Holy Spirit into it, they really become a powerful teaching tool,” he said. “We learn about how to respond to things in daily life from the perspective of faith, how faith can influence the daily choices we make. We have to keep learning, because our faith doesn’t change, but our understanding and our place in life changes.”

During his free time, Father Vaverek enjoys building things, helping to fix things around the rectory or church, and doing woodwork.

The priest has a pilot’s license and has flown single-engine aircraft with friends. However, most of his life is spent in service, and that’s fine with him.

“I really love being a father to the people I serve,” he said. “As a priest, I act as a father to some people who are older, some who are younger and some of my own age. There’s a fatherly role in building a community. That’s the heart of who we are, a eucharistic people, a community of believers.”

35 Responses to “Victim refuses to pursue charges” & related articles

  1. Sylvia says:

    What happened here? Any ideas? I tried to round up and post as many articles as I could which would might further bits and pieces of information. I don`t think I`m any further ahead. The complainant went to the diocese, and then the diocese went to ^police, and then the complainant said he didnt want to pursue criminal charges – is that it?

  2. Supoprt Fr. says:

    Yes that’s it b/c he didn’t do anything wrong. Now the Church must work it out internally. Justice is served.

  3. Demetrius says:

    The victim is a 32 year old adult male who is highly articulate, well educatedband mentally stable. The abuser on the other hand has a long history of being overly physical with young men and got out of hand (no pun intended) with the victims.

    Because of The Charter to Protect Children signed by all the Bishops in the USA, one single act of abuse or violation is enough for permanent removal from the priesthood OR a voluntary withdrawal to a cloistered monastery far away from the public to a life of prayer, penance, and mortification with no priestly faculties. Even in a case like this, one touch is one touch too many.

    Besides all of this one has to take into account that there is often a psychological duplicity on the part of the abuser that often includes narcissisitic tendencies, ego-centric personality disorder and many other problems.

    In many cases, it can take a Diocese years to sift through all of the witnesses, testimony, and ecclesiastical testimonies which then have to be sent to the Congregation for The Clergy in Rome. Pope Francis has promised swift action regarding priests with credible accusations.

    Remember, just because the victim decided NOT to pursue civil charges, he did so because he knew that the Church’s response would suffice, namely: permanent removal from the priesthood, laiczation, or a life of prayer and penance in a monastery far, far away from anyone.

  4. Demetrius says:

    This is the latest statement from the Diocese:

    FROM: Most Rev. Robert E. Guglielmone, Bishop of Charleston
    DATE: May 7, 2013
    RE: Update – Father Hayden Vaverek

    Previously I reported to you that Father Hayden Vaverek was the subject of an allegation of sexual misconduct of a minor. The alleged victim has indicated to police that he has no desire to press criminal charges. In fact, the alleged victim had never reported the matter to civil authorities; the Diocese reported the allegation to authorities as required by our Diocesan policy and the Dallas Charter. The alleged victim has repeatedly indicated that what he wanted was for Father Hayden to seek psychological help. Therefore, there are presently no criminal charges against him.

    However, the alleged victim insists that boundaries were violated and abuse did indeed occur. The Diocese, therefore, will continue its investigation into the allegation against Father Hayden and do what is required by Diocesan policy. He will remain on administrative leave.

    Please keep all involved in your prayers.

  5. Hayden David's Mom says:

    My family has known Fr. Hayden for 20 years, when my children were young! We all adore him, as do each of our sons! Fr. Hayden is a wonderful, holy many, who would never hurt any being, let alone a child! It is a shame that one person with an axe to grind could ruin this innocent man’s life! Obviously, my youngest is named for him, the first of many, plus he is godfather to my middle son, & will now, disappointingly not be be able to con-celebrate his godson’s wedding in November! Shame on the lying, scum accuser, shame on him!

    • PJ says:

      Hayden David’s Mom (what a farce of a name) – “However, the alleged victim insists that boundaries were violated and abuse did indeed occur.” Does this line mean anything to you? This victim is trying to avoid the criminal process in hopes of having the collar dealt with in the church way…admirable of him I would say. And then you call him scum etc. Why don’t you look in a mirror and see who is the real scum? You’re the one that should be ashamed of what you wrote. You’re a real work of art HDM! Upset about a wedding change? How shallow are you? Now undo the knot in your pantyhose, put on your big girl underwear and take back the words you directed at the complainant. And here’s another thing for you…if it had been one of your sons who had been abused, how would you react to someone writing the words YOU wrote about your son? Shame on you!!

      • Hayden David's mom & proud of it says:

        You are an asshole PJ, he had every opportunity, & never took it with my sons! You are a real asshole! Why t f—do you think the liar did not want to pursue criminal charges, the DA would have laughed the slanderer all the way home, you brainless idiot! I would state my life on this man’s innocence! The devil is at work in the lying accuser, & you sir should just sign your posts Son of Satan!
        My sons, ara a lawyer,a large corporate manager, & in college all support Fr. Vaverek, as well as my husband!
        Why don’t you take your evil satanic ways to Washington, & join President Obama! You seem to like those lying sleeve bags, because you are one! Do you even have a job? Jerk off!

        • PJ says:

          Wow…must have really touched a nerve with you. I won’t comment on the filth you wrote and insults you threw. You are too closed minded to see anything or to really understand anything. Everyone here will see who the real a-hole is and I’ll leave it at that. I sincerely hope and pray you never have a loved one go through what some of us have gone through…it would break your heart. One final note, although the collar didn’t touch your sons, please keep in mind those perverts select their prey and cultivate pure love with everyone else so people will think they are innocent…then they can do their evil work on their target. Happens all the time. I’m glad your sons were not “the chosen ones”. And I’ll continue to pray for those that were victimized.

          • Erzsi says:

            I admire your dignified responses to Hayden David’s mom. If action and words define us I believe she has not even demonstrated the least bit of Christian behavior. How in the world can someone like that profess to be religious is beyond me. You are right PJ these type of people work hard at gaining admiration and love from the community at large and then zero in on the most vulnerable children. I happen to know this priest through my older son and from the moment I met him my intuition and instinct were on alert. I am not surprised about this turn of affairs.

    • Mike Mc says:

      Wow…when I read a statement like the above I can understand the anger, confusion, disbelief.
      It’s worth repeating that I too at first could NOT BELIEVE the accusations towards our “Bishop” and a priest who taught “well and wonderfully” in my classrooms. The priest also gave a retreat to my students and the Bishop confirmed my grade 10 class…. and my own daughter!!!
      Imagine how I felt when I heard the news of their sexual abuses? It was both shock and “no way hosea!!”.
      But it was ALL TRUE.
      Hard to accept HD’s mom….but over time you realize the problem was real…and real evil exists….even in good sounding men.

  6. Demetrius says:

    It was announced today that Vaverek’s case has been forwarded to the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith and to the Congregation for Clergy in Rome for a FINAL DECISION as to LAICIZE Vaverek and remove him from the PRIESTHOOD as the charges are CREDIBLE.

    The case will work its way through the process in Rome and then Pope Francis will make the decision to laicize Vaverek and return him to the lay state or to send him to a life of prayer, penance or mortification. Nothing more can be done on a local level. It is out of the Diocese’s hands. This means that the accusations are TRUE.

  7. Sylvia says:

    Thanks for the update Demetrius. Let’s hope that he is indeed laicized.

  8. Hayden David's mom & proud of it says:

    You are all influenced by the devil!

  9. 1Yellowknife says:

    Greatly encouraged by your articulate and detailed reports, Demitrius. The institutional response was swift and decisive. If you are (in contact with) the complainant, wishing the VERY best.

    Thank you for your postings, Proud Mom. You remind us how horrendously difficult it is for those abused to come forward for they can expect the fecal shower you spewed repeatedly.

  10. Mike Fitzgerald says:

    Hey PJ;
    Don’t worry about HDM “breaking his/her heart”. This person doesn’t have one, much less the empty cranial vault that spewed this garbage. Mike.

    • PJ says:

      Thanks Mike….hard to believe someone could be so closed minded. Wonder how proud her husband and sons would be to read the trash she posted…quite the potty mouth for sure. Hopefully she’s gone for good now.

  11. CRG says:

    Are there any final updates about this case? I have come in contact with Fr. Hayden a few times several years ago and was curious about how all of this was resolved.

  12. " Anthony" says:

    Please let me know what is going on now concerning the Hayden Vaverek charges/case!

  13. Elaine says:

    I am the mother of the one who accused Hayden Vaverek of sexual abuse. Daily, the guilt, anxiety and devastation that I experience overwhelms me. How did I miss it?
    My son was abused repeatedly. He was an intimidated, threatened, terrified 13, 14 year old. It began in the context of confession. Hayden Vaverek was found guilty, it went through channels via Rome and he was laicized. The reason my son did not testify in court was simple. He thought Hayden would be murdered in prison…… as he is an arrogant, narcissist pedophile priest. My son didn’t want his murder on his conscience. Plain and simple.
    This abuse stripped my son’s heart and soul spirit of innocence . My son has experienced hell…… sad, sadistic, evil and nearly deadly consequences. I am grateful he is alive.
    Tragically those who abuse choose the vulnerable, the naive innocents and often the cradle Catholics, who have had priests in their lives for many years.
    If someone believes their children are not at risk, please reconsider. We, as a family, continue to deal with repercussions that drastically alter our lives FOREVER. My prayers are for my son’s heart, soul, spirit, mind and body ….., for healing. No one has any idea how it affects them until it does. It doesn’t abate, it doesn’t get better, it doesn’t heal. It is pervasive.
    Our church must get its head out of the sand and become proactive, not reactive.
    As for me, the mom, I can finally talk without sobbing. It’s taken years. But, I will now start talking and do all I can to promote and expose the tragedy of innocence stolen and lives nearly destroyed.

  14. 1yellowknife says:

    Elaine: I am in tears and so very sorry for the pain you describe. Your resolve to promote awareness of and expose the tragedy of your son’s abuse will be a gift — you will help dispel the darkness. Those impacted are often unable to voice their pain any longer. You are articulate and credible. You will reach many. My DAILY prayers will go with you. THANK YOU.

  15. PJJ says:

    Elaine, my heart goes out to you and especially to your son. I can tell you how devastating his abuse may be affecting him as I speak with experience. I too was abused by a collar at age 14 and my hell was a private hell for many years. Almost overnight I went from being an “A” student who was obedient to my parents and anyone in authority to someone who became cruel to others, I huffed solvents, drank, and did all matter of drugs, and became a Gr 10 dropout…all within a 2 year period. My healing began when I found the courage to confront our abuser 21 years later. That was the first time we opened up to our parents about what happened. It then took another 20 years to begin a lawsuit. There is hope for your son as you are lovingly supporting him and he knows you respect his decisions…that is huge and I am so happy to read your words of support to him. You’re right about that church as well. They only say the words of “healing” and “reconciliation” but from the top down, their actions demonstrate the opposite. If they were genuinely interested in healing the chasm between themselves and their flock they would not spend millions defending their perverted collars in court. Having lived through that process I can assure you that church has deep pockets and will defend its collars even after they have been convicted. Sad. God bless you for your words and how supportive you are for your son. I pray he will heal in time.

  16. PJJ says:

    Erzsi: Your reply (Jan 2019) to my earlier post is appreciated. Glad you kept an eye out on that collar. HDM was suffering from hysteria back then I suppose. Your post plus Elains post (above) really paint an accurate picture about this collar. Thanks for your words. Keep the faith man.

  17. Mike Fitzgerald says:

    Hey PJ! – really glad you’re back – you’ve been missed. Also really glad that things are going good for you. I will call and get your contact info. Mike.

  18. Sylvia says:

    I can’t read the article without paying toaccess it Christian. What is the gist if the article and how does it relate to Fr. Vavareck?

  19. Mike Mc says:

    Published 5 days ago on February 26, 2019
    By FITSNews
    A seismic social media post has residents in Greenville, South Carolina worried about the safety of students at St. Joseph’s Catholic School, one of the most exclusive and expensive private institutions in the Palmetto Upstate.
    The post – published late Monday evening by former student Michael Patrick Cassabon – alleges a sexual abuse coverup that involves a teacher “currently employed” by the school, which is located on a sprawling campus next to Interstate 85 a few miles southeast of downtown Greenville.
    “He continues to be employed despite my many complaints,” Cassabon wrote in his post.
    To be clear, the school employee in question is not the priest who allegedly abused Cassabon. However, Cassabon claimed in his post that the religion teacher was “involved” in the alleged abuse – reportedly enabling the behavior.
    “(The teacher) brought him to the priest’s home continuously,” a source familiar with the situation told this news outlet.
    Cassabon graduated from the school in 1998.
    According to Cassabon, “(e)ven after the abusing priest was laicized by a Vatican court, the teacher at St. Joseph’s Catholic School continued to raise money for the ex-priest.”
    “Laicized” is a term that means to deprive a priest of his clerical status.
    In his post, Cassabon wrote that the administration of the school had been aware of the situation since November of 2017.
    “The teacher in question continues to have unfettered access to children,” Cassabon continued.
    “Many people at the school and diocese discouraged me from speaking out about this, because they are understandably afraid of damaging the reputation of (the school),” Cassabon wrote. “However, transparency and honesty should be our ideal, especially for those who present themselves as Christian Catholic educators.”
    Cassabon added that “details will be forthcoming in the press.”

    • Mike Mc says:

      part 2

      On Tuesday morning the school’s headmaster, Keith Kiser, circulated an email to parents addressing the allegations raised by Cassabon’s post.
      Kiser confirmed that Cassabon first “reached out to me in November 2017,” but claimed that the teacher in question had “no knowledge” of any sexual misconduct on the part of the priest.
      “The graduate and I have been in contact intermittently since then, including an in-person meeting as recently as December 2018 and a subsequent phone call after the new year,” Kiser wrote in the email. “The graduate eventually asked that I fire the teacher, claiming that he should have known about the misconduct. Given that I was not the head of school then, I did my due diligence to understand our teacher’s involvement with the student and the priest. After consulting with school officials and the diocese, it was determined that the teacher had no knowledge that any misconduct took place.”
      Kiser added that “this entire matter has been heavy on my heart and in my prayers for months now,” and that he was “praying for healing for our graduate whom I have always respected and considered a friend.”
      “No one should have to suffer what he has suffered, most especially within the church,” Kiser continued. “I beg you for your prayers during this time of grave evil in our church, which is affecting our school for which our founders sacrificed so much to bring into existence. Please be assured that the safety and well-being of our students is of paramount importance. The school has aggressive policies to safeguard the well-being of our students.”
      Kiser’s explanation did not mollify all parents at the school, several of whom reached out to us expressing concern that a teacher St. Joseph’s would continue to publicly support a priest who was permanently defrocked in the aftermath of an investigation into sexual abuse claims. They also questioned whether the school had conducted a sufficiently thorough inquiry into the matter.
      “As a parent of a student at the school I am going to request that a more organized and thorough investigation be taken,” one parent told us.

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