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Two U.S. Bishops Resign Following Child Abuse Scandal

Liana DeMasi1 year ago

Two bishops have resigned after being linked to a child abuse scandal in which a member of the priesthood confessed to criminal sexual conduct of a minor.

Details of the Child Abuse Scandal

According to Reuters, Archbishop John Nienstedt of Saint Paul and Minneapolis and auxiliary Bishop Lee Piche resigned on Monday after their diocese faced criminal charges for failing to protect children from a sexually abusive priest.

Curtis Wehmeyer, the abusive priest Nienstedt and Piche failed to protect children from, was dismissed from the priesthood and is now serving five years in prison after pleading guilty to criminal sexual conduct with two minors and possessing child pornography.

Minnesota prosecutor John Choi filed the criminal charges against the archdiocese, although hundreds of civil cases have already been filed against it for failing to supervise priest activity or ignoring sexual abuse.  

Effects of Sexual Abuse

According to the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network, the following are possible long-term side effects that are associated with sexual abuse:

  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, associated with feelings of anxiety, stress or fear.
  • Self-harm may be used by survivors to try and cope with painful feelings. 
  • Flashbacks to the event.
  • Depression or feelings of sadness and unhappiness. 

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