– Five Police Reports, 10+ Alleged Victims (All minor boys and girls)
– Alleged victims in St. Cloud, Pine River, Alexandria, and Foley, MN
– Former Deacon in St. Cloud and Seminarian at Saint John’s
– Former Camp Counselor at Camp Foley in Pine River, MN
– Former President and CEO of Volunteers of America – MN
– Former Director; National Committee to Prevent Child Abuse
Michael W Weber: Allegations
At the 4pm mass on November 12, 2011, Holy Spirit’s Rev. Tom Knoblach announced that a listening session had been scheduled [ View ] to discuss an allegation of sexual misconduct by former deacon Michael Weber. On November 13, 2011, Knoblach announced that there were multiple allegations.
Weber allegedly sexually abused or engaged in inppropriate conduct with at least ten individuals, all minors (including at least five girls) between 1967 and 1970.
Weber allegedly met at least one of his victims through a “big brother” type program while he was a “St. Cloud Diocesan Seminarian at St. John’s Seminary”. Weber first expressed interest in the “big brother” program in March of 1967 when he was living among other seminarians and monks at Saint John’s Abbey. The program was to be run through a NAIM chapter (support group for widows) in the St. Cloud Diocese.
View 1967 letter showing Michael Weber’s interest… Here
All Posts Regarding Michael Weber… Here
Michael Weber’s Saint John’s Connection… Here
According to separate police reports filed on November 8, 2011, Weber sexually abused two minor males in 1968. One of the boys (V1) was abused at a cabin (possibly at Camp Foley) near Brainerd. The other (V2) was abused at Weber’s parents’ home in Foley. Each of these men has alleged that a minor female member of their own family was also abused by Weber (V3 and V4). Other family members corroborate this information.
According to a police report filed in Benton County (#1120010) one of Weber’s victims (V2) reported Weber’s misconduct to Mr. Roger Haire, a counselor at North Junior High School in St. Cloud, Minnesota. The young man and his mother were referred to and subsequently met with Jim Graeve, a counselor with Caritas, a counseling organization that was then, and is still run, by Catholic Charities.
Following the meeting with Mr. Graeve in 1969, Weber did not contact the young man (V2) again.
Weber, then a transitional deacon with the St. Cloud Diocese, had arranged to do his pastoral work at Holy Spirit Church in St. Cloud. Weber was at Holy Spirit from September of 1969 until February of 1970. This just happened to also be the parish of one of his victims (V1).
Weber continued to visit the home of his young victim (V1) despite the knowledge of diocesan employees. According to a police report filed in Crow Wing County (#11017808), Weber visited the boy’s home on several occasions during which he touched the boy inappropriately.
According to a statement from one of Weber’s alleged victims, Weber (a 1966 graduate of Saint John’s University) showed up at a 1970 Christian Family Ministry camping trip with other Saint John’s University affiliated families at a lake near Alexandria, Minnesota. Weber was joined by Dan Carle (SJU ’61), a therapist from Catholic Charities.
On Saturday, Michael Weber joined a group of children on the basketball court. He befriended a six-year old boy, giving him a piece of grape bubble gum. Later, he took the boy to a beach where he held him tight and sang, “Put Your Hand in the Hand” over and over.
Later, Weber allegedly asked the boy’s parents if the he could spend the night. Weber abused the six-year old boy (V5) in the tent that evening and/or the next morning. On Sunday morning, the boy ran from Weber’s tent, noticibly shaken. He ran into Liturgical Press employee, who directed him to his parents’ tent.
V5’s parents confronted Weber and/or the therapist on Sunday, then left the campground.
On Monday, the parents of the boy (V5) met with therapist Dan Carle back in St. Cloud. The therapist told them that he had been counseling Weber and said that “I guess he wasn’t ready”. The therapist told the parents to not make a big deal of the incident because at six years old, the boy “probably wouldn’t remember”.
The parents reportedly told the therapist that they would go to the police if Weber remained with the church.
Around the same time, Weber reportedly withdrew from the Saint John’s Seminary master’s program.
A full two years later, in April of 1972, Weber asked the Vatican to be laicized, a step required because Weber was an ordained transitional deacon with the Saint Cloud Diocese. The Vatican request was granted in July of 1972.
In September of 1972, Weber married Carol Schneiderhan and in December of 1974, they had their first child, a boy. Another child, a girl, would follow in 1977. Weber’s third child, a boy, was born in 1985.
According to the diocese, there are notes from 1998 or 1999 in the diocesean files regarding misconduct by Weber. The notes refer to one (v7) or two (v8) victims.
In 2004 (previously documented on this site as “circa 2001”), one of Weber’s victims (V1) contacted the St. Cloud Diocese. The diocese gave the victim money.
In 2009, one of Weber’s victims (V1) contacted the diocese again, making them aware of another victim (V2).
Roxann Storms, the Victim’s Assistance Coordinator with the St. Cloud Diocese contacted the St. Cloud Police Department and filed a verbal report (#09052904). At the time that the report was made in 2009, Ms. Storms was aware not only of V1 and V2, but of another victim (V6). In fact, this other victim (v6) told Ms. Storms that they were aware of yet another Weber victim (VX).
Also in 2009, Roxann Storms contacted both Saint John’s Abbey’s Abbot John Klassen and the records department at Saint John’s University. Early in 2010, she reportedly contacted Abbot Klassen again, as well as the Saint John’s Abbey External Review Board.
Despite their knowledge of his misconduct, Saint John’s allowed Weber to act as mentor for young men and women through the Saint John’s University Donald McNeely Center for Entrepreneurship, a position that Weber held since 2005. Weber also served on the Saint John’s University alumni board for a period of time.
In 2010, one of Weber’s victims (v6) told Ms. Storms that they planned to contact a Volunteers of America board member to make them aware of Weber’s past behavior. An internal investigation was reportedly conducted at VOA and Weber resigned from his position as President and CEO of Volunteers of America – Minnesota in December of 2010, effective March of 2011.
Michael W Weber: List of Alleged Victims
V1: Minor male on camping trip (1968; Crow Wing County)
V2: Minor male at Weber’s parents’ home (1969; Foley, MN)
V3: Minor female at child’s home (196?; St. Cloud, MN)
V4: Minor female at child’s home (196?; St. Cloud, MN)
V5: Minor male on camping trip (1970; Douglas County)
V6: Female (per diocese) (Unknown; Unknown)
V7: Unknown (per diocese notes in 1998-1999) (Unknown; Unknown)
V8: Unknown (per diocese notes in 1998-1999) (Unknown; Unknown)
V9: Minor female at child’s home, multiple occasions (196?; St. Cloud, MN)
V10: Minor male on camping trip (1967; Camp Foley)
Weber propositioned, sexually abused or attempted to abuse at least three other individuals.
V11: Minor male (1967; Camp Foley)
V12: Minor male (1968; Camp Foley)
V13: Minor female at child’s home (1969; St. Cloud, MN)
Michael W Weber: Subject of Police Reports
#1 St. Cloud (MN) Police; Case #09052904 (2009)
#2 Crow Wing (MN) County Sheriff; Case #11017808 (2011)
#3 Benton County (MN) Sheriff; Case # 1120010 (2011)
#4 Douglas County (MN) Sheriff; Case #11-10244 (Filed December 3, 2011)
#5 St. Cloud (MN) Police; Case #Unknown (Filed December 9, 2011)
More police reports will likely be filed in December.
Michael W Weber: Timeline
Born June 25, 1944
1962 Graduates high school from Crosier Seminary (Onamia, MN)
1963-1968 Camp Counselor at Camp Foley in Pine River, MN
1964 Completes two years of college at Crosier Seminary (Onamia, MN)
1965-1966 Volunteers at St. Cloud Children’s Home
1966 BA from St. John’s University (Collegeville, MN)
1967 – 1970
“St. Cloud Diocesan Seminarian at St. John’s Seminary”
Seminarian with St. Cloud Diocese
Attended Saint John’s Seminary (Now School of Theology*Seminary)
On track for summer, 1970 ordination with the St. Cloud Diocese
Wore priest’s collar, referred to as “Father Mike”
Ordained; Transitional Deacon with the St. Cloud Diocese
February, 1969 – March, 1970
Pastoral Studies; Church of the Holy Spirit (St. Cloud, MN)
Withdraws from St. Cloud Seminary Program
Withdraws from Saint John’s Seminary (Now School of Theology*Seminary)
Petitioned for laicization from Rome (April, 1972)
MA from the U of Chicago School of Social Service Administration
Granted for laicization from Rome (July, 1972)
Marries Carol Schneiderhan (September, 1972)
1972 – 2010
Various Committees and Positions (See Below)
One of Weber’s victims (v6) contacted one or more board members at Volunteers of America Board about Michael Weber. An internal investigation is conducted. Weber resigns his position as President and CEO of Volunteers of America – Minnesota, effective March 2011.
In November of 2011, Weber resigned from the following positions:
Chairman of the Board; Rainbow Research (Minneapolis, MN)
Mentor; Donald McNeely Center for Entrepreneurship (Collegeville, MN)
Board of Directors; Greater Twin Cities United Way
Michael W. Weber: Recent Roles
Chairman of the Board; Rainbow Research (Minneapolis, MN)
Rainbow Research has demonstrated background and experience in designing and conducting evaluations of programs and services dedicated to the prevention of and protection from events that could endanger the safety of children, youth, and families.
Mentor; Donald McNeely Center for Entrepreneurship (St. John’s University)
The Donald McNeely Center for Entrepreneurship is an entrepreneurship education resource that provides classes, coaching and assistance to entrepreneurs. It builds relationships among and between CSB/SJU students, faculty, alumnae/i, and community members to create and strengthen the entrepreneurial spirit.
Board of Directors; Greater Twin Cities United Way
Michael W. Weber: Previous Roles
President and Chief Executive Officer of Volunteers of America – Minnesota
Michael Weber will step down from his role effective March 31, 2011. Weber has held the position since 1997.
Associate Director and acting Executive Director of the National Committee to Prevent Child Abuse
The Battered Child by Mary Edna Helfer, Ruth S. Kempe, Richard D. Krugman
Director; Hennepin County Community Services Department
One such study conducted in the Minneapolis area found that between 14% and 26% of homeless adults were former foster care children, explained Michael Weber, Director of the Hennepin County Community Services Department, during joint hearings examining Foster Care, Child Welfare, and Adoption Reforms (1988).
Chairperson of the U.S. Advisory Board on Child Abuse and Neglect
The board recently selected Michael W. Weber of Minnesota as Chairperson and Randell C. Alexander, M.D., of Iowa as Vice- Chairperson. August 31, 1995
Co-chairman; Minnesota Leadership Council on Aging
But to make that happen before there is a crisis, “we need to figure out what we agree on, what is most needed, and we need to get pretty creative about it,” warned Mike Weber, co-chairman of the Minnesota Leadership Council on Aging.
“There’s a new voice for Minnesota’s aging population” (StarTribune 12/12/2006)
Michael W. Weber: Other Roles & Awards
- Director of the Program for the Community Protection of Children, a program of the Chapin Hall Center for Children at the University of Chicago
- Assistant Commissioner for the Minnesota Department of Human Services.
- President of the National Association of Public Child Welfare Administrators
- Chairperson of the Intensive Family Preservation Services National Network
- National advisory committee of the Children’s Division of the American Human Association
- Member of the Executive Committee of the National Association of Public Child Welfare Administrators
- Member of the national advisory board of the Intensive Family Preservation Services National Network
- Member of the National Commission on Child Welfare and Family Preservation
- Member of the National Commission on Family Foster Care
- Recipient of the 1990 Vincent DeFrancis Award from the American Humane Association
- Recipient of the 1993 Award for Excellence in Public Child Welfare Administration
Michael W Weber: Quotes
The public, elected officials, children’s advocates, and families and children will be better served by the development of clear policies to guide our society in better protecting children and enabling them to live in safe, nurturing families. In addition, we need to develop program strategies and foster serious research to guide child welfare professionals in better determining which services and supports have a realistic expectation of assisting parents in safely raising and nurturing their children. – Michael Weber; 1996
Family Preservation Can Be an Appropriate Strategy If Realistic Expectations Are Maintained
Michael Weber, Associate Director National Committee to Prevent Child Abuse
NRCCSA News, the newsletter of the National Resource Center on Child Sexual Abuse,March/April 1996 issue
Moreover, since many abused children become abusers as they grow into adolescence and adulthood, a prevention orientation must also include the clinical treatment of abused children to stop the intergenerational cycle of abuse. – Michael Weber; 1998
Four Commentaries: How We Can Better Protect Children from Abuse and Neglect[PDF], The Future of Children, Spring 1998
Douglas J. Besharov, Marcia Robinson Lowry, Leroy H. Pelton, and Michael W. Weber
“The preservation of families is an important goal, but not more important than the safety of children. All of us should be seeking to keep families together – as long as we can provide for the safety of all family members.”
Michael Weber, ABCAN Board member, Director of the Program for the Community Protection of Children, Washington DC Board meeting, 1994