The Diocese of La Crosse has released the names of seven more priests who have been credibly accused of sexually abusing children.
These additions, made Wednesday, include two priests who held assignments in La Crosse and four who worked at a now defunct Jesuit boarding school in Prairie du Chien.
- Benedict Adams (St. Anthony Retreat Center, Marathon)
- J. Michael Cannon (Campion High School, Prairie du Chien)
- Thomas R. Haller (Campion High School)
- J. Roger Lucey (Campion High School)
- Charles Meyer (St. Rose Convent, La Crosse)
- James V. O’Connor (Campion High School)
- Michael A. Spegele (St. Francis Hospital, La Crosse)
At least five of the priests have died, and the other two were long ago dismissed by the Society of Jesus. It is unclear whether Cannon (dismissed in 1997) and Haller (dismissed in 1982) are still alive, still working with children or still serving in religious roles.
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Though they served within the boundaries of the La Crosse diocese, none of the seven priests were official diocesan clergy or directly overseen by the bishop.
Wednesday’s disclosure came less than three weeks after the diocese released the names of 20 priests who were credibly accused of child abuse while serving in the diocese.
The list included J. Thomas Finucan, who was president of Viterbo University in La Crosse from 1970 to 1980.
“I encourage all victims to come forward as we offer our willingness and ability to assist in the healing process,” said Bishop William Patrick Callahan, who has been directing victims and their families to the Protect and Heal page on the diocesan website.
“I pledge my continued efforts to protect against future abuse,” he said.
“I promise that every future allegation will be addressed professionally and thoroughly.”