Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith confirms guilty verdict of Madison priest

Diocese of Madison officials were recently notified by the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, in Rome, of the publication of the findings of the appellate tribunal court’s hearing of the appeal of Fr. Gerald Vosen, who was placed on administrative leave in 2004 and formally suspended since 2008.

With this release, we inform the faithful of the diocese and the general public of the appellate tribunal’s conclusions.

The appellate tribunal has confirmed the finding of the first-instance tribunal (Diocese of Madison’s — 2007) that Fr. Gerald Vosen is guilty of two offenses against the sixth commandment (sexual misconduct), with minors under the age of 16.

Likewise, the appellate tribunal confirmed the penalty issued by the first-instance tribunal, namely, Father Vosen’s permanent removal from all ecclesiastical ministry with the admonition to lead a life of prayer and penance. No further right to appeal exists.

The confirmation of this penalty means that Father Vosen is not to exercise any public ministry, whatsoever, nor is he to present himself publically as a minister of the Church, including by wearing clerical dress.
continue at MadCatHerald


November 8, 2008

JANESVILLE — The Rev. Gerald Vosen was accused of sexually assaulting a Janesville boy at a time when pedophile priests made headlines, but he said he’s innocent.

Yet the church didn’t support him, a jury didn’t believe him and people in his parishes were left wondering whether the allegations were true.

Vosen, 74, has written a book, “Pick a Number: Stories of Faith,” and he tells his side of the story in a chapter that rips into the Janesville boy’s accusations and the Catholic Church. He’ll be in Janesville this weekend for a book signing.

He hopes the book will clear his name, even though the stink of sexual abuse has cost him everything: His career, his reputation and his trust in the Catholic Church.

Vosen was accused of sexual abuse in 2003.

A then 26-year-old man told Catholic authorities that Vosen had sexually assaulted him when he was in fifth and sixth grade at St. John Vianney Catholic School in Janesville.

Vosen claims in his book that his accusers were aware of the church’s large payouts to alleged victims. He claims his accuser’s lawyer asked for $1.1 million.

In 2004, Vosen filed a defamation of character lawsuit against the man.
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Sunday, October 19, 2008
In unusual move, SNAP group defends Madison bishop
Vosen insists that all of his accusers are lying, a civil jury which ruled against him misguided, and a church lay review board that found him guilty collusive.  But Vosen saves his harshest criticism for Morlino, which he describes as “gleeful” to remove him from the priesthood and in a “twisted” alliance with SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, the nation’s oldest and largest clergy sexual abuse self-help group.


Elizabeth D said...

If this priest was in fact innocent, which I have no idea but seems possible to me, then this is a deplorable and maybe damnable injustice. And if he did what he was accused of then it is very good he has been prosecuted by the Church courts even though apparently he has not been criminally charged in civil court. I was interested in hearing Vosen's side of the story and saw used copies of his book for sale on Amazon, but in googling just now I found to my surprise that the Madison Diocese declared years back that anyone possessing the book even though they have heard it involves a breach of a pontifical secret may be declared guilty of a canonical crime of being party to the breach of the secret! Yes, for possessing the book. I guess I understand the point though I am taken aback, and I guess I won't buy the book.

Anonymous said...

My two brothers and I were alter boys for Fr. Vosen in Cottage Grove from 1976 until 1983 and WE NEVER experienced any sort of inappropriate behavior, in any form or fashion while in his presence. We served mass dozens and dozens of times over that period, spent countless hours at his family's retreat in Merrimac (Fr's. "I Get The Window Club"), as did countless others and oddly, there are no reports from ANYONE in the St.Patrick's parish of any wrongdoing. Fr. Vosen's treatment has been shameful and while there clearly are predator priests, too many most certainly, Fr. Vosen is not and never was one of them. BTW, I bought his book...I'll take my chances.