Sasha Aslanian Feature Archive

A Twin Cities priest whose sexual urges led him to steal church funds and serve time in the Hennepin County workhouse is calling on his archdiocese to face the clergy sexual abuse crisis more openly. (03/12/2014)
In a letter to pastors and parish administrators Thursday, the archdiocese said a small number of parishes with significant debt would move ahead in what was once hoped to be a wider capital campaign effort. (03/07/2014)
An MPR News investigation found the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis has dealt with allegations and suspicions of child sexual abuse involving at least 70 clergy members since 1950 -- nearly double the church's official count. (02/19/2014)
An MPR News investigation found the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis has dealt with allegations and suspicions of child sexual abuse involving at least 70 clergy members since 1950 -- nearly double the church's official count. Explore an interactive database with details of the allegations against those priests, deacons and monks, along with the locations of their service and their current status. (02/19/2014)
Internal financial reports show the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis for years spent millions of dollars dealing with clergy misconduct. It created a system that allowed church leaders to remove priests accused of misconduct without attracting attention. But it also left the church vulnerable to embezzlement. (01/23/2014)
Golden mussels and "killer shrimp" could find their way to Minnesota. (01/12/2014)
Researchers discussed potential causes for the 60 percent decline in the state's moose population. (01/11/2014)
Harry Walsh wasn't included on a recent list of priests 'credibly accused' of sexual abuse. Church leaders knew his history, yet allowed him to continue working in parishes until the fall of 2011. Today Walsh teaches sex education to troubled teenagers and vulnerable adults in Wright Co., Minn. (12/19/2013)
The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis announced Dec. 17 that Archbishop John Nienstedt voluntarily 'stepped aside from all public ministry' while police investigate a claim that he touched a boy on the buttocks in 2009, an allegation the archbishop denies. (12/17/2013)
A detailed look at the priests named by the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis as clergy with credible accusations of child abuse against them. (12/06/2013)
A retired priest who admitted to sexually abusing several young boys and a teenager on a South Dakota American Indian reservation now lives less than a block from a school in New Prague, Minn. Three archbishops and other leaders of the Twin Cities archdiocese kept Clarence Vavra's past a secret, moving him 17 times during his 38-year career. Today, Archbishop John Nienstedt acknowledges that "serious errors were made by the archdiocese in dealing with him," and pledges to disclose the names of other priests who have abused children. (11/11/2013)
The former accounting director of the Twin Cities archdiocese said recently that several accused priests receive pension payments higher than normal. Another former church official discovered them, too, over the past few years and had them stopped. The archdiocese says church law requires that offending priests must have 'financial, therapeutic and spiritual support.' The Rev. Robert Kapoun is one of them. (10/09/2013)
Since 2007, at least 23 young Twin Cities men have left for the Horn of Africa, allegedly to take up arms in Somalia's civil war. Authorities believe the men joined al-Shabab, a ruthless and radical Islamic militia group vying to topple Somalia's weak transitional government. Here is what we know about these men. (09/25/2013)
Curtis Wehmeyer's eight years as a St. Paul priest are dotted with episodes of risky, sex-fueled behavior -- and the leaders of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis knew all about it. Last year, the parish of Blessed Sacrament faced a horror: Wehmeyer was convicted for his sexual abuse of two teenage boys. (09/23/2013)
Nienstedt says Minnesota's Bishops support a path to citizenship for immigrants living in the country illegally. (09/04/2013)