FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne’s NBC) – A man is suing Bishop Kevin Rhoades of Fort Wayne. The man claims Rhoades concealed knowledge of pedophile priests.
67-year-old Donald Asbee stood before reporters in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania on Tuesday and claimed priests sexually abused him as a child for several years.
Asbee said he lived in Milton, Pennsylvania as a child where he served as an altar boy at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church. During that time, Asbee said two priests repeatedly raped and assaulted him. Both priests are now deceased.
The two bishops named in the lawsuit did not lead the Diocese in Harrisburg when the alleged abuse took place.
Asbee said the two bishops, including Bishop Kevin Rhoades of Fort Wayne, concealed knowledge of the alleged abuse.
“I know that it can take victims a long time to come forward with their stories and to share with somebody and I can’t even imagine how it impacts their lives, but I know we have very good priests and good bishops,” said Cindy Black, Executive Director of Redeemer Radio.
The Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend released the following statement:
“Bishop Rhoades was saddened to learn of the horrific acts of child sexual abuse that Mr. Asbee alleges occurred within the Diocese of Harrisburg. Bishop Rhoades was himself less than 10 years old when these incidents purportedly occurred. He is confident the litigation process will show that he did nothing wrong. In all instances where he was aware of a credibly accused priest, Bishop Rhoades has promptly notified authorities and removed the individual from public ministry. He stands by his record as a Bishop – both in Pennsylvania and Indiana – of protecting victims of child sexual abuse.”