The archdiocese Houston/Galveston releases the names of the priests accused of sexual abuse

Avatar Abelina Tavera | January 31, 2019 243 Views 0 Likes 0 Ratings

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Houston Texas.—The Catholic Church releases the names of the priests accused of child sexual abuse. Here is the list with the latest information provided by the archdiocese and additional information, where available, based on court records and historical information.

Diocesan priests

Nicholas Cornelius Antle

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1934

Ordained: 1959

Status: Retired 1990

Removed from Ministry 2011

Died 2016

Robert Ralph Barzyk

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1932

Ordination: 1958

Status: Retired 1993

Removed from Ministry 1994

Died 2007

David Emmett Burn

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1935

Ordained: 1961

Status: Retired 1992

Removed from Ministry 1992

Died 2003

Moises Cabrera

Diocesan: Tuguegarao, Philippines

Incardinated Galveston-Houston 1985

Incardinated Manila 1994

Birth Year: 1946

Ordained: 1969

Status: Removed from Ministry 1988

Allen Ray Doga

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1925

Ordained: 1949

Died 1999

George Patrick Dougherty

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1925

Ordained: 1967

Status: Removed from Ministry 1996

Died 2002

Richard Edelin

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1953

Ordained: 1979

Status: Removed from Public Ministry 2013

Richard Edelin was accused of groping a 17-year-old girl while working as a young priest from at least 1980 to 1984 at St. John Vianney Catholic Church in Houston. The woman filed a complaint with then-Bishop Joseph Fiorenza in 1996, and said she was given a $5,000 check and assurances that Edelin would no longer work as a priest. In 2004, she stepped forward again when she learned he was set to return to priestly duties at St. Laurence Catholic Church in Sugar Land. Church officials indicated they were unable to confirm the allegations, however, and Edelin was approved to return to work in 2005 outside the Houston area. He was transferred to the Diocese of Baker in Oregon to serve at St. Elizabeth of Hungary Catholic Church in the town of John Day, and was reported officiating at a funeral in The Dalles, Oregon in January 2011. He was also listed as a co-pastor at the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Houston in a 1989 wedding announcement, and worked briefly as an auditor for the Galveston-Houston diocese.

Carlos (Charles) Guerra

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1953

Ordained: 1981

Status: Removed from Ministry 1984

Left Priesthood 1987

The first known priest arrested in the Houston area was Carlos “Charles” Guerra, who was charged in 1984 with sexually abusing a 14-year-old boy who said he was molested after visiting St. Cyril of Alexandria Church in west Houston in 1981 to learn about converting to Catholicism. At the time of the arrest, Guerra, 30, was assigned to Epiphany of the Lord Catholic Community in Katy. The boy said the alleged abuse began as massages and escalated over a period of three to four weeks. Charges against Guerra were dropped after a new state law required corroboration of the accuser’s testimony after a delay of six months.

Rodrigo J. Guillermo

Diocesan: Manila, Philippines

Incardinated Galveston-Houston 1979

Birth Year: 1928

Ordained: 1965

Status: Retired 1994

Removed from Ministry 1994

Died 2015

Alphonse Rodrigue Hemond

Religious: La Salette Fathers

Incardinated Galveston-Houston 1986

Birth Year: 1916

Ordained: 1949

Status: Retired 1990

Died 1990

Stephen R. Horn

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1944

Ordained: 1973

Status: Removed from Ministry 2008

Stephen Horn was removed as St. Luke the Evangelist Catholic Church’s pastor in January 2008 about two months after being accused of abusing a boy from 1989 to 1993 while assigned to Christ the King Catholic Church in Houston. Cardinal Daniel DiNardo wrote a letter to parishioners and held a press conference to announce Horn’s removal soon after he was promoted from bishop. Horn was treated at the Shalom Center rehabilitation facility for priests in Splendora after his removal, court records show. The Oblate priest came to the Galveston-Houston diocese as far back as 1973 after joining a San Antonio seminary in 1963. He was assigned to Christ the King from 1981 to 1994, when he was transferred to St. Luke the Evangelist in Houston.

William Jimenez

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1927

Ordained: 1953

Status: Removed from Ministry 1959

Joseph Giles Leduc

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1929

Ordination: 1955

Died 1981

Jesse S. Linam

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1935

Ordained: 1961

Status: Retired 1998

Jesse S. Linam was removed from the ministry in 1993 by the Diocese of Galveston-Houston after being accused of sexually abusing a minor. The details surfaced after a California man filed a federal lawsuit in 2002 in Galveston against the diocese, accusing Linam of sexually molesting him in 1973 and 1974 while he was a young parishioner at St. Andrew Catholic Church in Channelview. Officials did not say if the lawsuit stemmed from the same allegations that led to Linam’s removal from the priesthood. Linam served at St. Andrew until 1985, then served as a celebrant and officiant at weddings and funerals from 1985 to 1991 at St. Stanislaus Catholic Church in Anderson; Sacred Heart Co-Cathedral and St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church in Houston; and Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Bellville in Austin County.

Denis O. Lynch

Religious: Discalced Carmelite

Incardinated Galveston-Houston 1972

Birth Year: 1930

Ordained: 1957

Status: Removed from Ministry 1993

Died 2015

Christopher J. Martin

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston, Victoria

Birth Year: 1900

Ordained: 1924

Died 1989

Donald A. Neumann

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1946

Ordination: 1972

Status: Removed from Ministry 2013

Lawrence O. Peguero

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1921

Ordained: 1947

Status: Retired 1993

Died 2000

Four siblings — three sisters and a brother — filed a lawsuit against the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston in 2010 accusing their long-dead priest, Lawrence Peguero, of molesting them at their home in the 1970s while he was assigned to Our Lady of St. John Catholic Church in Houston. Peguero, ordained in 1947, had been dead about 10 years at the time. Before filing the lawsuit, the family had reached out to the archdiocese in 2007 but rejected officials’ offer to fund counseling sessions. A fifth accuser filed a lawsuit in 2010. Peguero reportedly served at least one other Houston parish and in the Beaumont diocese before retiring in 1993.

Dennis L. Peterson

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1947

Ordained: 1973

Status: Laicized 2005

Died 2007

Dennis Peterson fashioned himself as an advocate for troubled youth in the Houston area, where he founded the Houston Community Youth Center and served as the Harris County Juvenile Detention Center’s chaplain. He was on medical leave from St. John Neumann Catholic Church in Houston in 1999 when a lawsuit accused him of molesting one of the at-risk youths he was tasked with counseling. The victim, then in his 20s, claimed that Peterson, while assigned to St. Anne’s and St. Francis Cabrini Catholic churches in Houston, plied him with drugs and alcohol and abused him from 1987 to 1997, according to court papers. A grand jury in 1999 declined to indict Peterson for an alleged sexual assault in March 1997, records show. Three more adults — all siblings — came forward in a 2000 lawsuit to accuse Peterson of molesting them as teens in the mid-1970s. The case was dismissed because the statute of limitations had expired. Peterson was assigned to St. Peter the Apostle Church in Galveston in 1973 and Co-Cathedral of Sacred Heart in Houston in the late 1970s. He died in July 2007 from a sudden illness, according to his obituary. Services were held at St. Theresa’s Catholic Church in Houston.

Robert C. Ramon

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1949

Ordination: 1982

Status: Removed from Ministry 2002

Resigned from Priesthood 2002

Deceased 2014

Robert Ramon, while assigned to Prince of Peace Catholic Church in Houston, was accused of molesting a girl in 1991, according to a lawsuit her parents lodged two years later in 1993. The suit was settled in 1995. A case number referencing the lawsuit was published on the Bishop Accountability website but no record of it appears on the Harris County District Clerk’s website. Ramon served as a co-celebrant during an April 1990 funeral at St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church in Houston with another accused Prince of Peace priest, John Keller. Ramon died in Pasadena in 2014 at age 64, according to an obituary. A service was held at San Juan Diego Catholic Church in Pasadena.

Charles Kevin Schoppe

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1925

Ordained: 1949

Status: Removed from Ministry & Retired 1992

Died 2014

Monsignor Charles Schoppe had already been forced to retire in 1992 from a child molestation claim when another round of allegations surfaced against him a decade later, church officials have said. He served as pastor of St. Thomas More Catholic Church in Houston from 1967 until 1974, during which he is believed to have molested four children. The diocese revealed the complaints of three victims about a week after the U.S. Conference of Bishops approved the Dallas Charter, which was created to dictate how dioceses react to child sex abuse claims. Schoppe oversaw the St. Dominic Center in Houston at the time of the 1992 claim.

Anthony G. Stredny

Diocesan: Nashville

Incardinated Galveston-Houston 1971

Birth Year: 1929

Ordination: 1957

Status: Removed from Ministry 1993

Died 2018

Ivan Turic

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1940

Ordination: 1968

Status: Faculties Removed 1977

Religious Order Priests

Antonio Gonzalez, OMI

Religious: Oblate

Birth Year: 1927

Ordained: 1957

Status: Left Priesthood 1985

Anthony Gonzales was accused of impregnating a 17-year-old parishioner in 1983 while he was assigned to Immaculate Conception Church in Houston, according to a lawsuit filed in 2005. The priest promised her he was going to the Vatican to seek permission to marry her but never returned to their Harrisburg Boulevard parish; instead, he was shipped off to Canada instead. He was removed from the priesthood in 1985 after serving at about a dozen parishes throughout Texas. The woman, believing he had died, learned in 2003 that he was alive and living in Taylor with a family of his own. She sued the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate of Texas. The religious order agreed to pay her $1.35 million a week before trial was set to begin in 2008.

Jack Hanna, CSB

Religious: Basilian Fathers

Birth Year: 1944

Ordained: 1974

Status: Faculties Removed 2013 (Galveston-Houston)

Anthony Keil (Kyles), SSJ

Religious: Josephite Fathers

Birth Year: 1894

Ordained: Check OCD

Died 1969

Pius Lawe, SVD

Religious: Divine Word Fathers

Birth Year: 1976

Ordained: 2005

Status: Removed from Ministry 2009

Vincent Orlando, SJ

Religious: Jesuit

Birth Year: 1941

Ordained: 1974

Status: Removed from Ministry 2002

Vincent Orlando, a former teacher and principal at Strake Jesuit College Preparatory in Houston, was accused of sexual misconduct with a minor in 1985 while working at Jesuit High School in Tampa, Florida. The Houston school sent out a notice to parents in 2002 detailing the allegation. Orlando left Strake in 2000. A 2002 letter to parents described a another complaint, saying Orlando was accused of inappropriately touching a Strake student in 1984 during a school-sponsored ski trip.

Walter Dayton Salisbury, SSJ

Religious: Josephite Fathers

Ordained: 1959

Status: Removed from Ministry 1993

Retired 1993

Walter Dayton Salisbury was arrested in April 1978 on allegations he molested a 13-year-old boy he met while serving as a chaplain at Texas Southern University’s Newman Center. He later pleaded no contest to the charge and received three years of probation. Another accuser has said Salisbury molested him at a pool about the same time as the 1978 arrest, and Salisbury was convicted of molesting another child in 1993 while assigned to St. Luke Parish in Washington, D.C. He is now believed to be living in Maine, where he was removed from a housing board for elderly residents after his two convictions were discovered in 2010. The Archdiocese of Washington D.C. identified Salisbury as credibly accused in October 2018.

Donald Stavinoha, OMI

Religious: Oblate

Birth Year: 1943

Ordination: 1970

Status: Removed from Ministry 1986

Convicted 1988

Died 2007

Donald Leroy Stavinoha was arrested and charged with aggravated assault in 1986 after a Houston patrol officer found him sexually assaulting an aspiring 9-year-old altar boy in the back of a van belonging to the Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in east Houston. The officer was parishioner at Immaculate Heart of Mary and recognized Stavinoha as a co-pastor. Another officer testified that Stavinoha flaunted his priesthood during booking, saying “They won’t do anything to me.” Stavinoha joined the church in 1983 after graduating from St. Anthony Seminary in San Antonio. He pleaded guilty in 1990 and was sentenced to nearly 10 years in prison, but was released in March 1991 after serving only about one year. He died in 2007.

John Benedict Weber, O.Carm.

Religious: Carmelite

Status: Removed from Ministry 2011

Andrew Willemsen, CM

Religious: Vincentian

(Later Incardinated Austin)

Birth Year: 1928

Ordained: 1954

Died 2012

Extern priests from other dioceses

Luis (Eugenio) Eugene DeFrancisco

Diocesan: Cali, Colombia

Birth Year: 1908

Ordained: 1931

Status: Removed from Ministry 1960

Fernando Noe Guzman

Diocesan: Morelia, Mexico

Birth Year: 1951

Ordained: 1979

Status: Removed from Ministry 1987

One of the most notorious cases in the Houston area was Father Fernando Noe Guzman. He came to the U.S. in 1982 from Morelia, Mexico for an assignment at the predominantly Spanish-speaking Christ Our Light Catholic Church in Navasota. Two years later, he was accused of molesting a 14-year-old girl at her grandfather’s home. He blamed the girl, saying she was “a rather precocious child who came on to him,” a church leader later testified, and he was transferred to Galena Park’s Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Church the following year. The allegations surfaced after a church secretary in Galena Park file a multimillion-dollar lawsuit accusing him of forcing her into a sexual relationship. The lawsuit was dismissed, but Guzman was then charged with sexual assault in Grimes County. He pleaded guilty, was granted shock probation and served 90 days in jail. He registered as a sex offender in Galena Park under the name Jose Fernando Guzman, and was arrested at least twice for drunken driving — in Waller County in 1994 and Harris County in 1997. He died on Oct. 17, 2006, according to state records.

Francisco Ordonez

Diocesan: Nuevo Laredo, Mexico

Birth Year: 1930

Ordained: 1995

Status: Removed from Ministry 2003

Joseph Tully

Diocesan: Rockford

Ordination: 1925

Status: Retired 1971

Died 1982

Recent allegations currently under investigation

John T. Keller

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1948

Ordination: 1974

Status: Removed from Ministry 2019

John Keller was accused of engaging in an inappropriate relationship with a 9th grade boy while assigned to Prince of Peace Catholic Church in Houston. The allegations surfaced after a woman sent a letter on behalf of her now-adult son to a former diocese chancellor in July 2001 detailing the allegations. A diocese review board considered the complaint and Keller underwent a psychological assessment, according to church officials. Former Bishop Joseph Fiorenza dismissed the complaint, saying there were “obvious differences” between what the accuser and Keller said of the incident. The bishop concluded that Keller “should remain in ministry.” He has remained at Prince of Peace Catholic Church since the allegation. He was absent from a Nov. 6 confirmation ceremony due to medical issues, according to Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, who performed the ceremony.

Facing criminal charges

Manuel La Rosa Lopez

Diocesan: Galveston-Houston

Birth Year: 1957

Ordination: 1996

Status: Removed from Ministry 2001, 2018

Manuel La Rosa-Lopez, the latest priest to face criminal charges, is accused of abused an altar boy in 1992 while he was a seminarian. The child’s family confronted church leaders at St. Thomas More Catholic Church in Houston about alleged inappropriate touching and La Rosa-Lopez was moved out of the parish. The Peruvian clergyman was nonetheless ordained in 1996 and assigned to the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Conroe in 1997, where he was accused of molesting two more youths. He was confronted again about the alleged abuse in Conroe in 2001 and was treated at the Shalom Center in Splendora. He was later reassigned to St. John the Fisher Church in Richmond, where he remained until the month before his Sept. 11 arrest. He is facing charges of four counts of indecency with a child in Montgomery County.


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Written by Abelina Tavera