A complete chronology of MPR News coverage
Jul 22, 2014 —The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis and the Diocese of Winona had asked the judge to dismiss the case.
Jul 21, 2014 —A detailed exploration of the roots of the clergy sex abuse scandal in the Twin Cities -- in documents, audio, photos and video -- from the cover-up tactics that Archbishop Harry Flynn fine-tuned in the bayous of southern Louisiana to the secrets kept in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis.
Jul 15, 2014 —In her sworn statement, the former archdiocese chancellor also accused top church leaders of a "cavalier attitude" towards the safety of children, and contradicted sworn testimony by former top church deputies Peter Laird and Kevin McDonough and archdiocese attorney Andrew Eisenzimmer.
Jul 15, 2014 —The call for change among lay Catholics is rising after an MPR News documentary showed how three Twin Cities archbishops kept quiet about priests who sexually abused children.
Jul 14, 2014 —An MPR News radio documentary, reported over the course of a year, found that Catholic leaders had protected abusive priests for decades and played hardball with victims. Reporter Madeleine Baran discussed the project on All Things Considered.
Jul 14, 2014 —When clergy sex abuse threatened to become a scandal in the Twin Cities, the archbishop in charge covered it up. So did the next archbishop, and the next.
Jul 9, 2014 —Twin Cities church leaders in 1987 were confronting allegations the Rev. Joseph Wajda was sexually abusing children. In at least one instance, though, the archbishop wanted to fight back.
Jul 2, 2014 —The man says he was barely 13 when the Rev. Alphonsus Ferguson first assaulted him. An attorney for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis said the church has no record of complaints against Ferguson during his time at Guardian Angels Church in Hastings.
Jul 2, 2014 —Archbishop John Nienstedt, who has led the archdiocese's response to the clergy sexual abuse scandal for nearly a year, confirmed in a statement Tuesday that he ordered a private investigation into unspecified allegations against himself.
Jul 1, 2014 —A Minneapolis law firm has been secretly investigating the private life of Twin Cities Archbishop John Nienstedt for the past six months. Nienstedt acknowledged that he authorized an investigation into allegations made against him.
Jun 25, 2014 —Ramsey County Judge John Van de North ordered a former Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis vicar general, the Rev. Kevin McDonough, to sit for another deposition in a clergy sexual abuse case.
Jun 24, 2014 —The Rev. Jerome Kern testified that he would grab boys while swimming or wrestling. He said he didn't consider it to be sexual abuse at the time — and that no one from the archdiocese told him it was harmful or illegal. "I was always a teaser, and I liked to tease, you know."
Jun 23, 2014 —The diocese's latest release also details how the church responded to the allegations, most of which took place decades ago. Many priests were referred to counseling and treatment programs. Few faced criminal investigations.
Jun 22, 2014 —A Mendota priest has resigned from his parish after a Clergy Review Board reviewed a 1998 incident in which the priest allegedly touched a 17-year-old boy. The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis said a second priest is stepping aside temporarily while a sex abuse investigation is reopened.
Jun 11, 2014 —A former member of a central Minnesota boys' choir says a St. John's Abbey priest, who went on to become headmaster of St. John's Prep school in Collegeville, abused him while on a trip to Europe more than two decades ago. The alleged victim's family say they decided to go public with their allegations after learning the priest is still in public ministry.
Jun 11, 2014 —In a deposition released Monday, St. Louis Archbishop Robert Carlson said he wasn't sure whether he knew it was illegal for adults to have sex with children when he served as chancellor of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis in the 1980s. The St. Louis archdiocese is contesting the assertion, saying reporting on the remarks has taken them out of context.
Jun 11, 2014 —A former Catholic priest who has admitted to sexually abusing children said in a deposition made public Wednesday that he was never asked by church officials to identify all the children he'd abused, even though some officials knew he'd abused young boys as early as 1964.
Jun 9, 2014 —St. Louis archbishop Robert Carlson — who served in the Twin Cities for 24 years — testified last month that he wasn't sure whether he knew it was illegal for priests to have sex with children when he served as chancellor of the Twin Cities archdiocese in the 1980s, according to a transcript released Monday.
Jun 4, 2014 —Former Twin Cities archbishop Harry Flynn said at least 134 times that he could not remember how he handled clergy sexual abuse cases during his 13-year tenure, according to a deposition made public today.
May 30, 2014 —The announcement comes amid an internal investigation into whether Don Briel, director and founder of the Center for Catholic Studies, or others at the university knew that an archdiocesan board had recommended that the Rev. Michael Keating, a professor of Catholic Studies, not mentor young adults.
May 28, 2014 —A former top archdiocesan official contradicted Archbishop John Nienstedt's account of how top officials responded to a sexual abuse claim against a Catholic priest, according to sworn testimony made public today.
May 22, 2014 —None of the men's names had previously been disclosed by the Twin Cities archdiocese, even though media reports had named two of them previously and one former cleric had been convicted of sexual misconduct.
May 19, 2014 —A lawsuit filed Monday accuses the Rev. Richard Eckroth of sexually abusing boys at a cabin in northern Minnesota. Internal documents show that Eckroth took more than 350 children to the cabin without their parents, but attorney Jeff Anderson said it's not clear how many of them may have been abused.
May 14, 2014 —Officials with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement say 48-year-old Leo Charles Koppala was turned over to authorities in New Delhi on Wednesday.
May 6, 2014 —The Catholic Services Appeal Foundation asked priests in the May 2 letter to boost fundraising at parishes, but said the effort remains on track compared to the same period last year.
May 6, 2014 —The Vatican's U.N. ambassador in Geneva, Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, revealed the figures during a second day of grilling by a U.N. committee monitoring implementation of the U.N. treaty against torture.
May 5, 2014 —Archbishop Silvano Tomasi said there had been a "stabilization and even decline of cases of pedophilia."
May 2, 2014 —Vatican City is one of the countries that signed the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Convention Against Torture.
Apr 24, 2014 —For nearly three decades in various roles throughout the archdiocese, the Rev. Kevin McDonough assured parishioners in dozens of interviews and personal conversations that the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis was a national leader in fighting abuse.
Apr 22, 2014 —Nienstedt said he had followed a subordinate's advice that he keep no written notes of certain discussions, in case those notes should later become public in legal proceedings. He said that he didn't publicly disclose which priests were being monitored, and that he relied on others to keep parish trustees informed.
Apr 21, 2014 —The four-hour deposition marked the first time Archbishop John Nienstedt has had to answer questions under oath about clergy sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis since he was appointed to its helm six years ago.
Apr 16, 2014 —In November, the Rev. David Barrett went on leave as assistant pastor of St. Wenceslaus in New Prague, Minn., for what the archdiocese described as sexual misconduct not involving minors that took place more than a decade ago.
Apr 15, 2014 —Poor oversight and flawed policies are among the serious shortcomings inside the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis that opened the door "for some priests to harm children," a panel ordered by the archbishop concluded Monday.
Apr 4, 2014 —None of 12 metro law enforcement agencies contacted by MPR News confirmed that the archdiocese had offered files to review.
Apr 2, 2014 —The four-hour deposition of Nienstedt ended heatedly after attorney Jeff Anderson, who represents a man who says he was sexually abused by the Rev. Thomas Adamson in the 1970s, asked the archbishop to turn over files of offending priests to law enforcement.
Apr 2, 2014 —The leader of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis will be deposed as part of a lawsuit brought by a man who says he was sexually abused by the Rev. Thomas Adamson in the mid-1970s.
Apr 1, 2014 —The archdiocese included the information about the Rev. Kenneth LaVan and other priests as part of a statement released Monday evening about documents provided to victims' attorneys in advance of a deposition of Nienstedt scheduled for Wednesday.
Mar 27, 2014 —Daniel Haws, an attorney for the archdiocese, said church officials need more time to review an estimated 60,000 pages of documents before providing them to attorneys representing a man who says he was sexually abused as a child by the Rev. Thomas Adamson in the mid-1970s.
Mar 27, 2014 —The Diocese of New Ulm is suing another diocese and a religious order, accusing both of sending a priest to New Ulm in the early 1980s without telling the diocese that the priest had a long history of being accused of child sexual abuse.
Mar 26, 2014 —The cases pertain to Archbishop John Nienstedt, and Curtis Wehmeyer, a St. Paul priest serving time in prison for child sexual abuse.
Mar 25, 2014 —Robert Schumacher will preside over discovery disputes in a lawsuit filed against the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis and the Diocese of Winona by a man who claims that the Rev. Thomas Adamson sexually abused him when he was a boy.
Mar 22, 2014 —The eight members of a new Vatican commission charged with advising the Roman Catholic Church on how to confront and prevent sexual abuse of children by its priests include a prominent victim.
Mar 18, 2014 —Ramsey County Judge John Van de North ordered church leaders to provide the documents by March 31 to attorneys for a man who said he was abused as a child by the Rev. Thomas Adamson in the mid-1970s. The deadline is two days before his attorneys will question Archbishop John Nienstedt under oath about his handling of abuse claims. Most of the documents will not be sealed.
Mar 12, 2014 —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.
Mar 11, 2014 —Ramsey County Attorney John Choi has declined to file charges against Archbishop John Nienstedt, who in December was accused of groping a boy several years ago at a public event.
Mar 10, 2014 —The Crosiers have made public the names of 11 priests and brothers who'd been accused of abuse. All are either deceased or no longer with the order. Ten of the 11 either served in Minnesota parishes, or at the Crosier seminary in Onamia, Minn.
Mar 7, 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.
Mar 5, 2014 —In a three-page order issued Wednesday, Chief Judge Edward Cleary denied requests by the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis and the Diocese of Winona to block depositions of Nienstedt and former vicar general Kevin McDonough.
Feb 27, 2014 —Ramsey County Judge John Van de North had ordered the archdiocese to provide the names by Feb. 18. The archdiocese fought the order, arguing it would cause "irreparable harm to the Archdiocese and its clergy," but failed to convince Van de North to change it.
Feb 25, 2014 —The Twin Cities Archdiocese knew in 2004 that the Rev. Jon Shelley looked for sexual images of minors with Internet search terms such as "free naked boy pictures," according to documents released by St. Paul police.
Feb 25, 2014 —Six children in a single family have been sexually abused either by the Rev. Curtis Wehmeyer or each other. Their mother calls her family's everyday life now a "war zone," bereft of the support the archdiocese once promised. She used to hope some of her sons would become priests. Now she hopes that they survive the effects of the abuse.
Feb 20, 2014 —The MPR News story published Wednesday said the archdiocese has not disclosed a complete list of clergy accused of child sexual abuse. The story cited police reports, court records and the archdiocese's internal files. In its statement, the archdiocese said that it remains committed to disclosing "substantiated" claims of abuse.
Feb 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.
Feb 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.
Feb 18, 2014 —In a statement, the archdiocese said it's appealing the order because it's overly broad, and disclosure of the names -- even under seal -- could harm priests who've been accused falsely.
Feb 17, 2014 —The list, posted on the Archdiocese website, includes nine names. All but two of the men are already known to the public. Three are dead. Only one was accused in the past decade.
Feb 14, 2014 —Lawyers for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis and the Diocese of Winona are seeking to block the depositions of Archbishop John Nienstedt and two other priests and halt the ordered release of the names of priests accused of child sexual abuse since 2004.
Feb 14, 2014 —The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis showed an operating loss in fiscal 2013 compared to a $1.5 million operating surplus the prior year. Officials attributed that loss to a big jump in reserves to cover unknown future costs tied to clergy abuse claims.
Feb 11, 2014 —A Ramsey County judge has ordered the archbishop to be deposed on the policies and practices of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis on the handling of abuse allegations, including whether the archdiocese followed its own policies.
Jan 30, 2014 —Victims' attorney Jeff Anderson sued the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis Thursday then immediately slammed Ramsey County Attorney John Choi for what he called a "defective and deficient" response to allegations that top archdiocese leaders covered up clergy sex abuse. Choi strenuously disagrees.
Jan 29, 2014 —The document -- a formal decree signed by Nienstedt to comply with church law -- says the archdiocese knew of allegations against the Rev. Curtis Wehmeyer on June 18. Yet police reports show the archdiocese didn't report the claims to police until two days later. Wehmeyer pleaded guilty in November 2012 to three counts of criminal sexual conduct and 17 counts of possession of child pornography.
Jan 29, 2014 —Before a news conference he held alongside Ramsey County Attorney John Choi on Wednesday morning, St. Paul Police Chief Tom Smith sat down with reporters to discuss the progress of the police investigation into alleged clergy sexual abuse. "When I hear over and over again that 'mistakes have been made,' we need to know what those mistakes are," he said.
Jan 29, 2014 —Washington County Attorney Pete Orput said multiple agencies analyzed disks copied from the Rev. Jonathan Shelley's computer and found insufficient evidence to press charges.
Jan 29, 2014 —Ramsey County Attorney John Choi said authorities had investigated whether officials of the Twin Cities archdiocese had failed to report suspicions of abuse in a timely way. He said that while he continued to be troubled by the church's communication practices, he had found no evidence that might persuade a jury.
Jan 28, 2014 —Scholar says hidden funds are 'universal' in dioceses plagued by scandal.
Jan 26, 2014 —The disclosure comes after similar releases by the St. Cloud, Duluth and Winona dioceses, the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, and St. John's Abbey in response to public pressure from victims and parishioners and, in some cases, court orders and pending litigation.
Jan 23, 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.
Jan 21, 2014 —The Archdiocese of Chicago, one of the largest and most influential in the U.S., handed over last week more than 6,000 pages of documents to victims' attorneys.
Jan 17, 2014 —The statistics for 2011-12 represent the first time that the Vatican has provided details on the number of priests who have been defrocked.
Jan 16, 2014 —At a U.N. hearing, Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the Vatican's representative in Geneva, says "such crimes can never be justified" whether committed at home, school, sports activities or in religious organizations and structures.
Jan 11, 2014 —The lawyers have asked Ramsey County Judge John Van de North to suspend the Feb. 5 deadline for the disclosure of the names of priests accused since 2004. In separate court filings, they argued that the judge's order went too far and could harm the reputations of falsely accused priests.
Jan 6, 2014 —During a hearing on Monday, officials from the Diocese of New Ulm told the judge that the list should remain secret. They moved to dismiss a nuisance claim that demands the diocese disclose the names.
Jan 3, 2014 —Twenty-one of the priests, the diocese said, are dead. Of the living: Four live in Collegeville, one lives in St. Cloud, one in the Twin Cities metro area and another in New York City. The diocese doesn't know the whereabouts of five of the priests on the list.
Jan 2, 2014 —A Sartell man has asked a Stearns County court to order the Diocese of Saint Cloud to release a list of 26 priests church officials say are credibly accused of sexual abuse.
Dec 31, 2013 —The Diocese of Duluth today released the names of 17 former priests it says have been credibly accused of sexual abuse of a young person sometime in the years from 1950 to the present.
Dec 30, 2013 —A Ramsey County judge ordered the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, along with the Diocese of Winona, to release the names of all priests accused of sexually abusing minors by Jan. 6. Now, both dioceses are asking the judge to modify his order to allow them to investigate allegations before releasing accused priests' names.
Dec 24, 2013 —Harry Walsh is a former priest who was accused of sexually abusing two minors decades ago. The accusations came to light as part of Minnesota Public Radio's ongoing investigation into the church's response to clergy misconduct.
Dec 20, 2013 —An internal church memo from 2002 names three priests with "known abuse histories" who weren't on the list of "credibly accused" priests released by the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis earlier this month.
Dec 20, 2013 —Allegations against leaders of the Twin Cities Archdiocese in recent months have triggered anger among many parishioners. If they choose to take a stand with their dollars, it could affect how the church moves forward with projects throughout the coming year.
Dec 19, 2013 —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.
Dec 18, 2013 —According to police, an archdiocese attorney and vicar general answered some questions and planned to meet again with police. No other details were provided.
Dec 17, 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.
Dec 17, 2013 —St. Paul Police Chief Tom Smith said the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis is not cooperating with an ongoing criminal investigation into clergy sexual abuse.
Dec 17, 2013 —Auxiliary Bishop Lee Piche will temporarily be the public face of an archdiocese that is facing fierce criticism for how it handled clergy sexual abuse.
Dec 17, 2013 —The St. Paul-Minneapolis Archdiocese says Archbishop John Nienstedt is being investigated by police for an allegation of touching a boy on the buttocks.
Dec 16, 2013 —The Roman Catholic Diocese of Winona has named 14 priests accused of sexually abusing minors.
Dec 16, 2013 —Advocates for victims are calling for police search warrants and a grand jury investigation that could reveal potentially incriminating documents from the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. But so far, there are no clear signs that St. Paul police and Ramsey County Attorney John Choi will use that approach.
Dec 15, 2013 —Archbishop John Nienstedt has started addressing the clergy sex abuse scandal head on, telling parishioners and the media Sunday that he's sorry he overlooked issues of abuse among parish priests.
Dec 13, 2013 —An advance copy of the archbishop's remarks was sent to clergy throughout the archdiocese. He plans to celebrate Mass at Our Lady of Grace parish in Edina Sunday.
Dec 10, 2013 —A Ramsey County judge has allowed to go forward a lawsuit that alleges the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis created a public nuisance by failing to disclose information about priests accused of sexually abusing minors.
Dec 10, 2013 —The list of 18 current and former monks includes nine living at Saint John's Abbey in Collegeville, Minn., under "supervised safety plans," the abbey said.
Dec 9, 2013 —Attorneys suing the Diocese of Duluth are pressing for the release of a list of 17 priests accused of sexually abusing minors.
Dec 6, 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.
Dec 5, 2013 —Archbishop John Nienstedt included the men in a list of 34 priests posted to an archdiocese website, 30 of whom had been credibly accused of child sexual abuse and publicly known. Nienstedt didn't say why he didn't report the allegations against the seven to police. Two of the seven men live in the Twin Cities.
Dec 5, 2013 —Seven of the priests were not previously known by the public as abusers. Others, such as the Rev. Robert Kapoun, are already well known through lawsuits and media coverage. About one-third of the priests on the list are deceased.
Dec 4, 2013 —The archdiocese plans to release the names of 29 priests who it says have been credibly accused of sexually abusing children on its website Thursday.
Dec 2, 2013 —The nearly four-year battle over the list of names, which had been sealed in a 2009 lawsuit, continued in Ramsey County District Court today as attorneys for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis argued that some of the names should not be released to the public.
Nov 26, 2013 —The archdiocese flagged the Rev. Mark Huberty in an internal document a decade ago for sexual misconduct -- but top officials said this fall that they didn't know about his sexual misconduct until this year. Huberty was charged earlier this month with criminal sexual conduct for an alleged sexual relationship with a woman under his pastoral care.
Nov 21, 2013 —A lawsuit filed Thursday against the Catholic diocese of Crookston, Minn., and a Catholic missionary organization alleges sexual abuse of children by a priest.