Abbey’s Statement regarding lawsuit related to Othmar Hohmann
The entire community of Saint John’s Abbey grieves the pain and suffering of those who have been harmed by abuse and those whose lives have been diminished by the pain they have suffered. We are committed to doing all we can to bring healing and peace to the survivors. We look forward to hearing this survivor’s story and to continuing our initiatives to hold offending monks accountable.
Fulfilling our commitment to survivors includes our decision last year to voluntarily release comprehensive work, medical and personal files of the monks who are likely to have offended. The excerpts from the files of Fr. Othmar Hohmann, OSB, released at today’s news conference are part of the thorough personal and work histories the abbey voluntarily gave to the law firm of Jeff Anderson & Associates in July 2015.
The files are wide in their scope, providing comprehensive disclosure of personal and work information regarding these monks. However, they are not likely to include details of specific incidents that were not reported to the abbey, law enforcement agencies or others.
Today’s allegations involving Othmar Hohmann are a case in point. This lawsuit is the first time the claimant’s allegations have been communicated to us. The abbey still has not been provided any substantive information about the abuse alleged to have occurred a half century or more ago. Complicating the challenge is that Othmar Hohmann has been dead for 35 years.
Learning of this new lawsuit recommits us to the full and complete public release of the files of all 18 monks who are likely to have offended. We strongly hope that the healing of survivors will be supported with the full release of the files and we are taking steps to achieve that goal.
Read this and other Abbey statements… Here