HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - The Jesuits U.S. Central and Southern Province will soon release a preliminary list of Jesuits and former Jesuits of the province who have been credibly accused of sexual abuse of minors, according to a news release from Jesuit’s U.S. Central and Southern Province.
In the news release, the province said it has hired Kinsale Management Consulting Inc. to review personnel files of Jesuits going back to 1955. The audit will result in a comprehensive list of Jesuits accused, which will take some time and will be spring 2019 before the comprehensive report is released.
The province will release the preliminary report on Friday, Dec. 7.
Ronald A. Mercier, SJ, provincial of the Jesuits USA Central and Southern Province, released the following statement:
“The People of God deserve transparency from the leadership of the Church,” said . “It is my hope that through the publication of this information, we can work to rebuild trust, always with the well-being of victims in mind. On behalf of the Jesuits of the USA Central and Southern Province, I apologize to the victims for the pain caused by Jesuits in the past."
The Jesuits encouraged anyone who has suffered abuse by a Jesuit to notify the appropriate law enforcement or child-protection agency.
The province also encourages victims to contact Carol Brescia, he province’s victim assistance coordinator. Brescia is a therapist with experience working with victims and survivors of trauma.She can be reached confidentially by phone at 314-915-7168 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The U.S. Central and Southern Province includes the states of Mississippi, Louisiana Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, southern Illinois, Kansas, Missouri, New Mexico, Texas, Tennessee and Oklahoma as well as the Central American countries of Belize and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.