Q: What is the status of the 101 claims filed against the Diocese of New Ulm and against some parishes under the Minnesota Child Victims Act?
A. The Diocese of New Ulm is working with those representing victims and survivors to fairly resolve claims, aid victims and survivors in healing and prevent future abuse. The Diocese is working to identify insurance coverage that could go toward resolution of the claims. The Minnesota Child Victims Act temporarily removed for three years the civil statute of limitations for historical claims of child sexual abuse. The deadline for victims to file a sex abuse claim was May 25, 2016.
Q. Are new claims made in these lawsuits under the Minnesota Child Victims Act?
A. These claims are related to abuse alleged to have happened many years and in some cases several decades ago. The claims in these lawsuits do not involve anyone who is currently in parish ministry.
Q. Has the Diocese issued a public apology to victims and survivors?
A. Yes. The Diocese has apologized publicly to victims and survivors and continue to do so both publicly and privately.
Please see Bishop LeVoir’s video message, Hope Healing, and Peace.
Q. If someone was sexually abused as a child and has not yet come forward what should he or she do?
A. Anyone who has suffered sexual abuse or exploitation by a priest or anyone else involved in Church ministry in the Diocese of New Ulm should immediately report such misconduct to local law enforcement, regardless of when the misconduct occurred.
County law enforcement and social service agencies (Updated 2015)
Contact information for reporting misconduct in each of the fifteen counties of the Diocese of New Ulm.
Victims and survivors of sexual abuse in Church ministry are also encouraged to contact the diocesan Victim Assistance Coordinator at 1421 6th Street North, New Ulm, MN 56073, or via phone at 507-233-5313, for counseling or other assistance in healing.
Q. What steps is the Diocese taking to ensure the protection of children and young people?
A. All priests and deacons, diocesan staff, parish and Catholic school employees, as well as parish and Catholic school volunteers who have regular or unsupervised interaction with minors, are mandated to meet safe environment requirements. These include:
- Submission to a criminal background check
- Adherence to a Code of Conduct
- Participation in sexual abuse awareness and prevention training
For more information about safe environment requirements, see the Promise to Protect page.
Q. What is the Diocese of New Ulm doing to assist victims and survivors of abuse by priests on their healing journey?
A. The Diocese offer victims and survivors assistance including pastoral care, independent counseling provided free of charge and coordinated through the diocesan Victim Assistance Coordinator. Victims and survivors are invited to meet with the Bishop or other diocesan staff as part of the healing process.
Please visit the Report Abuse page for more information.
Q. How will lawsuits affect diocesan and parish ministry in the Diocese of New Ulm?
A. We do not expect that these lawsuits will affect core diocesan, parish or Catholic school ministry. We expect that normal operations will continue as we work toward resolution of the lawsuits.
Q. Should I continue to contribute to my parish at this time?
A. Yes, your financial contributions are essential to support the core ministries of your parish.
Q. What if I have additional questions?
A. Please visit https://protectandheal-dnu.org/ for more information. You can also call the diocesan Office of
Communications at (507) 233-5332.