Assignment Record Rev. Thomas Andert, O.S.B.

Summary of Case: Thomas Andert is a priest of the Order of St. Benedict (Benedictines), ordained in 1975. A monk of St. John's Abbey in Collegeville MN, Andert has spent his career as an educator, academic administrator, and as a parish priest. Andert was investigated by Abbey officials in 1994 for an improper sexual relationship with a minor boy who was a St. John's Preparatory School student. Andert was the school's headmaster at the time. The matter was dropped when the boy is said to have told the Abbot that there was no sexual misconduct. In June 2007 Andert was appointed prior of St. John's Abbey and member of the Abbey's External Review Board. The appointment drew public criticism. In response, an Abbey spokesperson said the 1994 investigation yielded "no credible charges of sexual abuse." However, the chair of the Interfaith Sexual Trauma Institute at St. John's in 1994 provided a detailed account in 2007, stating that the investigation was inadequate, and that an inappropriate sexual relationship did occur. Andert's alleged victim took his own life in December 2014. Andert was placed on leave in August 2015 due to allegations of "sexual misconduct" with a second St. John's student.

Ordained: 1975


 

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Start Stop Assignment Town/Accusations State Position Notes

1975

St. Cloud bishop was George Henry Speltz (1968-1987).

1981 St. John's Abbey

Collegeville

MN  

 

1981 1982         Andert is not indexed in the 1982 Directory, nor is he listed in the diocesan pages as at his previous or next assignments.

1982

St. Paul and Minneapolis archbishop was John Robert Roach (1975-1995).

1987 Benilde-St. Margaret's High School St. Louis Park MN President Benilde-St. Margaret's had 973-900 students.
1982 1987 Most Holy Trinity St. Louis Park MN Associate Pastor  
1987 1989 Study Leave        

1989

St. Cloud bishop was Jerome George Hanus, O.S.B. (1987-1994).

1994 St. John's Preparatory School

Collegeville

Andert was investigated by St. John's Abbey officials in 1994 for an improper sexual relationship with a male student of St. John's Prep. The student was invited to the Abbey to speak with Abbot Timothy Kelly, O.S.B., and is said to have denied that there had been sexual misconduct. In 2007 Andert was appointed prior of the Abbey and member of the Abbey's External Review Board. The appointment drew strong criticism. Richard Sipe, who was chair of the Interfaith Sexual Trauma Institute at St. John's in 1994, said in 2007 that the investigation was inadequate, and that an inappropriate sexual relationship did occur. The alleged victim took his own life in December 2014.

Another accusation was publicized in 2015 that Andert had abused a second St. John's student.

MN Headmaster

St. John's Prep. had 216-205 students.

1994 Letters from Andert to Student

1989

Hanus was succeeded by John Francis Kinney (1995-2013), followed by Donald Joseph Kettler (2013- ).

August 2015 St. John's Abbey Collegeville MN Prior 2007- August 2015  
August 2015           Andert was placed on leave in August 2015 due to an allegation of abuse of another St. John's student.

 

Sources: Official Catholic Directory (New York: P.J. Kenedy and Sons, 1976-2014)

1994 Letters from Andert to Student, Behind the Pine Curtain
St. John's Troubled Abbey, By A.W. Richard Sipe, Behind the Pine Curtain, September 30, 2007
A Statement from Saint John's Abbey, By William Skudlarek, October 26, 2007
Lawyer to Abbey: Follow Settlement, By David Unze, St. Cloud Times, October 27, 2007
Prior Accused of Misconduct, By John F. O'Sullivan, The Record, November 2, 2007
St. John's Abbey Suffers Relapse, By A.W. Richard Sipe, November 4, 2007
Abbott Klassen Responds to Review Board Criticism, By David Unze, St. Cloud Times, November 7, 2007
St. John's Abbey leadership, old.stjohnsabbey.org, accessed March 27, 2015
Will Investigation of Rev. Thomas Andert Show More Deception?, Posted by Mike Bryant, August 27, 2015 9:33 AM
Catholic Church Sex Abuse Survivors Frustrated by Pope Francis" US Visit, Lack of Action, By Julia Glum, International Business Times, September 25, 2015

 

 

Priests in a Parish: We use the following convention to show a priest's place among the clergy of a parish: 1/2 means that he is the first priest listed in the Official Catholic Directory (usually the pastor) and that there is a total of two priests at the parish. The shorthand 3/4 means that the priest is listed third on a four-priest roster. See our sample page from the Directory.

Note: The Official Catholic Directory aims to report the whereabouts of Catholic priests in the United States on January 1 of the Directory's publication year. Our working assumption is that a priest listed in the Directory for a given year was at the same assignment for part of the previous year as well. However, Kenedy and Sons will sometimes accept updates well into the year of publication. Diocesan clergy records are rarely available to correct this information. The Directory is also sometimes misleading or wrong. We have tried to create an accurate assignment record, given the source materials and their limitations. Assignment records are a work in progress and we are always improving the records that we post. Please email us with new information and corrections.

This assignment record collates Andert's career history as it is represented in the Official Catholic Directory with allegations as reported in the media. We make no representation regarding the truth of the allegation we report, and we remind our readers that the U.S. legal system presumes that a person accused of or charged with a crime is innocent until proven guilty. Similarly, individuals who may be defendants in civil actions are presumed not to be liable for such claims unless a plaintiff proves otherwise. Admissions of guilt or liability are not typically a part of civil or private settlements. For more information, see our posting policy.

This assignment record was last updated on December 30, 2015.


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