October 18, 2005

Diocese urged to apologize to families of funeral home victims

Minneapolis Star Tribune

Larry Oakes, Star Tribune
Last update: October 17, 2005 at 8:58 PM

SUPERIOR, WIS. - An official for the Diocese of Superior said Monday that Bishop Raphael Fliss plans to meet this week with relatives of two men slain in a Hudson, Wis., funeral home, in what a judge found was most likely a double murder by a Catholic priest who later killed himself.

"We'd like to express our condolences and sincere sorrow," the Rev. Philip Heslin, chief operating officer of the diocese, said during a meeting with clergy-abuse survivors who are pressing the diocese to explain why the Rev. Ryan Erickson was allowed to be a priest, despite allegations of sexual misconduct.

Heslin's announcement came as two members of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests hand-delivered a letter to the diocese, calling on Fliss to apologize to the families of those slain, release all records on Erickson and aggressively encourage victims of Erickson and other priests to come forward.

"These questions are not going to go away," Peter Isely, SNAP's Midwest director, said. "They can either voluntarily surrender the answers or a cloud of suspicion will continue to hang over this diocese."

Posted by kshaw at October 18, 2005 08:55 AM