Archdiocese Local

Archdiocese concludes investigation of allegation against Roeland Park priest

The Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas places the protection of children as its first priority. Furthermore, the archdiocese respects the sincere concerns of all individuals who bring forth allegations of misconduct, and is thus committed to conducting thorough investigations of all such allegations.

The archdiocese has concluded its investigation of allegations against Father John Wisner made by three men, now in their 40s, alleging sexual misconduct by Father Wisner approximately 30 years ago. Father Wisner denies that he engaged in any sexual misconduct. At the time of the initial allegation in May 2012, Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann temporarily relieved Father Wisner of his ministerial responsibilities and restricted him from exercising his priestly ministry pending the results of an investigation into this matter. The initial May 9, 2012, statement by the archdiocese stated only one man had made an allegation. However, since the initiation of the investigation and archdiocesan statements soliciting additional information from the public, two additional men also made allegations against Father Wisner.

At the outset of its investigation, pursuant to the Child Protection Policy of the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas, the archdiocese notified local law enforcement authorities, and Archbishop Naumann appointed a special auditor with law enforcement and investigative experience to investigate the allegation. The results of the investigation were given to the Independent Review Board of the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas which has completed its review and delivered its recommendation to Archbishop Naumann. As prescribed by the “Essential Norms for Diocesan/Eparchial Policies Dealing with Allegations of Sexual Abuse of Minors by Priests or Deacons” (U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops), Archbishop Naumann, after having found the allegations to bear “a semblance of truth,” is in the process of transmitting the matter to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in Rome. The congregation, after considering the matter, will notify Archbishop Naumann whether it will call the case to itself or will direct him in how to proceed with the case. During the pendency of the congregation’s consideration, Father Wisner will continue to be relieved of ministerial responsibilities and restricted from exercising his priestly ministry.

Father Wisner has served as a parochial vicar (associate pastor) at St. Agnes Parish in Roeland Park since 1985. He was ordained in 1972 and has served at Sacred Heart and Christ the King parishes in Kansas City, Kan., and at St. Joseph Parish in Shawnee. The archdiocese has no record of any other allegations of sexual misconduct raised against Father Wisner in his 40 years of ministry.

The archdiocese encourages any persons who believe they have been sexually abused by any cleric, employee or volunteer of any archdiocesan parish, school or agency, regardless of when such abuse may have occurred, to contact the archdiocesan Safe Environment Coordinator at (913) 647-0324, the Confidential Report Line at (913) 647-3051, or to contact local law enforcement. Specifically, if anyone has information pertinent to this investigation, they are encouraged to contact the archdiocesan Safe Environment Coordinator at the above number.

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The Leaven

The Leaven is the official newspaper of the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas.

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  • I was trained as a psychiatrist by Dr. Eisner. During the years of these accusations. I believe that he would not have done this. He always spoke disparaging about sexuality, such as talking about one mucous membrane seeking another. He honestly was not a fan of sexuality at all. This was 1983 to 1991.