February 24, 2005

Ex-Evansdale priest dies in Mexico


By PAT KINNEY, Assistant City Editor

WATERLOO --- A former Evansdale priest, defrocked in 1997 in connection with sexual abuse complaints, has died in Mexico.

Archdiocese of Dubuque officials confirmed Wednesday that Robert Reiss, who served at St. Nicholas Church in Evansdale from 1971 to 1974, died Feb. 3 in Chilpancingo, Mexico. A cause of death was not specified.

Reiss, ordained a priest in 1955, also served at Northeast Iowa parishes in Fort Atkinson, Nashua and Stacyville as well as other eastern Iowa communities over a 35-year career.

"Some may remember his priestly service with gratitude. Others claim they were abused by him," Archbishop Jerome Hanus wrote in a press release announcing Reiss' death, encouraging all clergy sex abuse victims to contact the archdiocese for help.

The archdiocese's release provided no information as to when or where alleged abuse incidents occurred. Follow-up questions e-mailed to the archdiocese were not immediately answered.

Posted by kshaw at February 24, 2005 07:57 PM