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Former Missouri Monk Admits Abuse, Lawsuit Implicates Area Church Officials in Cover-Up

St. John's Abbey Church
St. John's Abbey Church

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – A former monk at a Benedictine monastery in northwestern Missouri is admitting that he had inappropriate sexual relations with several members of a boys choir in the 1980s.

Bede Parry led the Abbey Boy Choir of Conception Abbey from 1982 to 1987 and is a central figure in a lawsuit against the abbey filed Thursday.

He tells The Kansas City Star he had sexual contact with five or six choir members.

He says most of the inappropriate contact was with males over the 18, but two of the encounters were with males 16 to 18. Parry says he feels terrible about it.

Parry did not return a telephone message left by The Associated Press on Friday.

A Missouri man sued the abbey on Thursday, alleging he was abused by Parry and that abbey officials covered up Parry’s abusive past in Missouri and Minnesota.

The man alleges former St. Cloud Bishop Jerome Hanus — who was Conception’s Abbot at the time — covered up Parry’s past abuse.

In addition, the lawsuit alleges Parry admitted to a relationship with a student at St. John’s University’s School of Theology in Collegeville to then-St. John’s Abbot Jerome Theisen.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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