Friday, April 29, 2016

South Bend priest accused of sexual abuse, removed from Fort Wayne parish

Posted on June 20, 2013 at 1:00 a.m. | Updated on June 20, 2013 at 5:33 p.m.

FORT WAYNE, Ind. — A Catholic priest removed from a Fort Wayne parish after being accused of sexual abuse in Africa about 20 years ago coached soccer in Uganda about that time.

Ugandan native Vee Batu told The Journal Gazette for a story Thursday that the Rev. Cornelius Ryan was a “renowned high school soccer coach” at St. Henry’s College in Masaka, Uganda, from 1991 until 1994 or 1995. Batu expressed disbelief at the sexual abuse allegation.

A directory of Holy Cross priests says the 76-year-old Ryan was ordained in 1966 and based in Fort Portal, Uganda, from 1967 until 1999. He then spent time in Kenya before returning to the order’s provincial house in South Bend.

Holy Cross attorney Richard Nussbaum II says Ryan’s now at an undisclosed location with no public ministry.

The diocese’s 2011 directory lists Ryan as administrator at St. Therese-Little Flower Catholic Church in South Bend, and a history on the church’s website lists him as beginning his ministry there in 2001, according to a story by the Journal Gazette.

The website’s historical listing shows Ryan served as a priest at Little Flower from 2007 to 2011.