Three Former Loyola Jesuits Identified with Sexual Abuse Allegations

Three former Loyola University priests were included in a list of Jesuits with “established” allegations of sexual abuse of a minor since 1955, released Monday by the USA Midwest Province of the Society of Jesus.

The list includes 65 Jesuits who have worked in the midwest and have at least one established allegation — meaning there is “reasonable certainty” to believe the allegation — against them, which was either reported while they were alive or revealed after their death. The list doesn’t include allegations that haven’t been fully investigated yet.

Two priests on the list — Father John J. Powell and Father Daniel J. McGuire — worked at Loyola University and five worked at Loyola Academy in Wilmette at the time of their alleged abuses. Both McGuire and Powell have multiple allegations against them.

Father M. Lawrence Reuter, who worked at Loyola University for more than 10 years, is also included in the report, but his abuse reportedly occurred at Loyola Academy before his time at the university.

McGuire was stationed at Loyola University and Loyola Academy, along with four other Illinois locations where he allegedly abused minors, according to the list. He died in federal prison in January 2017, according to the list. McGuire’s incidents reportedly happened over the span of more than 50 years, from 1954 to 2005.

Powell, who also worked in North Aurora, Illinois, during an incident, died in 2009. All of his reported abuses allegedly occurred in the 1960s.

Of the 65 Jesuits listed, 11 allegedly abused minors in Chicago. Six priests allegedly abused minors at St. Ignatius College Prep, a high school near the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Loyola University President Jo Ann Rooney released a statement in response to the release of the list, which said she personally struggled with understanding the extent of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church and affirming that the safety of Loyola students, faculty and staff is her highest priority.

“Trust has been shattered,” the statement said. “Lives have been irreparably harmed. Now is the time to confront the issue and find a way forward with compassion and a commitment to do better, to be better.”

The statement also included resources for victims of sexual violence, including the school’s anonymous reporting system, EthicsLine, and the Loyola Wellness Center.

Loyola’s Campus Ministry responded to this fall’s Grand Jury report of widespread sexual abuse within the Pennsylvania clergy. The department held panels and listening sessions following the report and created a webpage providing resources for action against abuse.

Campus Ministry Director Lisa Reiter said Loyola University students are being challenged with understanding clergy abuse as adults, whereas they were young when the first reports of widespread scandal in the Catholic Church was uncovered by the Boston Globe in 2002.

“They’re looking at this as mature young adult Catholics, and so they have lots of questions, so part of what we wanted to provide is some of the historical perspective that some of us have been living with through this as a part of our church,” she said.

Reiter said the most jarring part of clergy abuse is the tendency for bishops and other church officials to cover it up, but she said the release of the report is a sign that the Jesuits are trying to be transparent and hold themselves to a higher standard. She also said the involvement of law enforcement and conducting of investigations shows they are taking the allegations seriously.

“I think we’re having an honest conversation about ‘yes there are Jesuits who have credible allegations,” Reiter said.

The post Three Former Loyola Jesuits Identified with Sexual Abuse Allegations appeared first on Loyola Phoenix.

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