Dubuque Archbishop Emeritus Jerome Hanus is scheduled to testify in two sexual-abuse lawsuits brought against the Benedictine abbey where he plans to retire.details at TH(pay)
A Catholic archbishop in Iowa who retired Monday will be deposed in upcoming weeks in two lawsuits brought against the Benedictine abbey in Missouri where he was abbot for 10 years.continue at NCReporter
Two men who say a Benedictine priest sexually abused them as minors in the 1980s filed the lawsuits against Conception Abbey in northwest Missouri. Jerome Hanus, the retiring archbishop of Dubuque, Iowa, was abbot there at the time.
The lawsuits, filed in Missouri circuit court in the summer of 2011, say that before the priest, Bede Parry, allegedly abused the two minors, he had previously reported to Hanus other "inappropriate sexual relationships" with minors.
Upon receiving notice of the previous relationships, the lawsuits say, Hanus allowed Parry to remain as a youth choir director while receiving psychological treatment.
According to court records, Hanus is set to be deposed for one of the lawsuits April 25. Testimony in the other lawsuit had been set but had to be rescheduled, a lawyer for one of the men who filed the lawsuit said in an email.
The communications director for the Dubuque archdiocese said Hanus retired for health reasons and not because of the pending depositions.
"I await the opportunity to be deposed," Hanus wrote in an emailed statement to NCR Thursday. "I look forward to it."
"Although I am a Bishop of the Church, I am also a Benedictine Monk," Hanus continued. "I began my priestly life at Conception Abbey. In my twenty-five years as a Bishop, it has always been my intention to return to Conception Abbey when I retired."