Thursday, October 27, 2005


4th Louisville priest defrocked after charges of sexual-abuse

LOUISVILLE, Kentucky - A fourth man has been dismissed from the priesthood and three elderly priests were ordered by the Vatican to stop working as priests after a review of sexual-abuse claims in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Louisville.

Joseph Herp, who had been accused of sexual abuse in four lawsuits in 2002 and 2003, was dismissed from the priesthood, according to a new report on sexual abuse issued by the archdiocese.

The Vatican also ordered Robert Dollinger, J. Irvin Mouser and Edwin Scherzer to live in prayer and penance. They are not allowed to perform any public ministry, present themselves as priests or have unsupervised contact with minors.

The Vatican uses that option in cases of "health problems or advanced age," according to the archdiocese's report.

Mouser is 67, Dollinger, 78, and Scherzer, 79, according to court records. The archdiocese said Dollinger, Mouser and Scherzer would not comment.

The decisions were made public in the archdiocese's newly published annual report on finances and other activities, including its response to sexual abuse.

Scherzer has pleaded not guilty to criminal charges. The other three never have been charged.

See also, the never-ending chronicle of church-related crime.

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