Having just read the statement [ View ] released today by Abbot John Klassen on behalf of the Abbey of Saint John’s, I am alarmed and deeply sad.
Earlier this week, my office took legal action and made public, information concerning alleged sexual misconduct by Abbot Timothy Kelly against a New York man. Contrary to Abbot Klassen’s accusations in his statement, we did this only because Saint John’s had already been made aware of the charges nearly six months ago and failed to investigate it, respond to it, or disclose it. The fact is Abbot Klassen himself was the recipient of a letter dated December 15, 2010, from Richard Sipe informing him of serious and detailed allegations that Father Kelly had sexual relations with several boys at St. Anslem’s church in the Bronx, New York. (A copy of the Sipe letter is attached)
When contacted by a survivor and subsequently learning that an earlier detailed report of abuse by Kelly against anywhere from four to twelve others had been made by Richard Sipe to the Abbey—and that no investigation followed, the only response left was to do what they should have done when they received it in December—take meaningful action on behalf of the survivor.
All of which only leads to more questions about how many other times St. John’s got reports like those made by Richard Sipe and ignored them or chose to remain silent until a courageous survivor, like this one, comes forward with the help from our team.
Jeff Anderson Responds to St. John’s Abbot
Clergy Abuse Lawyer says Abbot John Klassen’s statement that
“there was never a hint” of any issue of sexual abuse by Abbot Kelly is wrong
June 9, 2011