Minneapolis Archdiocese files for bankruptcy amid clergy abuse claims

Associated Press/January 16, 2015

St. Paul, Minnesota -- The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis filed for bankruptcy protection on Friday, saying it’s the best way for the church to get as many resources as possible to victims of clergy sexual abuse.

“We’re doing the right thing,” Rev. Charles Lachowitzer, a top church official, said before Friday’s filing in U.S. Bankruptcy Court. “This decision reflects ... a process of putting victims first.”

The archdiocese is the 12th U.S. diocese to seek bankruptcy protection in the face of sex abuse claims. The lawsuits will be put on hold while the bankruptcy case is pending.

The filing estimates that the archdiocese — with more than 800,000 parishioners — has assets between $10 million and $50 million, with liabilities between $50 million and $100 million. It also estimated 200 to 300 creditors.

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