Statement of the Diocese of Crookston re: Reinstatement to Priestly Ministry of Fr. Pat Sullivan

December 23, 2017 -- In April of 2016, Fr. Pat Sullivan was placed on administrative leave from his assignment as Pastor of St. Elizabeth’s Parish (Dilworth, Minn.) and St. Andrew’s Parish (Hawley, Minn.) as a result of an allegation set forth in a civil Complaint served through the law office of Mr. Jeffrey Anderson. The Plaintiff alleged that, in 2008, while serving as Pastor of St. Mary’s Mission Church (Red Lake, Minn.), Fr. Sullivan engaged in “unpermitted sexual conduct” with the Plaintiff when he was 15 years old. Local and federal authorities investigated the matter and no criminal charges were filed. Fr. Sullivan has consistently denied the allegation. No other allegations have been made against him.

The Plaintiff was deposed by diocesan attorneys. The Diocese of Crookston Board of Review for the Protection of Children and Young People (Board) reviewed the deposition of the Plaintiff and deemed the allegation not credible. The Board is comprised of two social workers, a county sheriff, a police detective, an attorney and a diocesan priest. Following the policy and recommendation of the Board, and adhering to Canon Law, Bishop Hoeppner has reinstated Fr. Sullivan for public ministry.

The Diocese of Crookston takes any and all accusations of sexual misconduct by clergy very seriously. If you or someone you know has been the victim of sexual misconduct on the part of a priest, deacon, or individual representing the Diocese of Crookston, its parishes, or its schools, please contact Cindy Hulst, LSW, the diocesan Victim’s Assistance Coordinator at 218-281-7895.


Download statement HERE.