Rev. Dale J. Fushek

Ordained: 1978

Fushek founded the Life Teen movement in 1985 and went on to become Vicar General of the Phoenix diocese. He was accused of sexual harrassment in 1995, which resulted in a settlement in 2002. Criminal charges filed in 2005 stem from alleged abuse of five youths between 1985-1994. Another civil suit filed in 2005 alleges that Fushek gave a youth alcohol and masturbated while the youth was molested by another priest. This suit was settled in Dec. 2006 for $100K. Fushek left the priesthood and started a non-denominational worship center in 2007. He was excommunicated for this by the bishop in Dec. 2008.

Start Stop Assignment Town/Accusations State Position Notes


Phoenix bishop was James Steven Rausch (1977-1981), followed by Thomas Joseph O'Brien (1981-2003)

1983 St. Jerome's Phoenix AZ

3/3 ,4/4

St. Jerome's had a school with 334-345 students.
1981 1982 Diocesan Ministry of Christian Worship Phoenix AZ Co-director of Worship


1982 1990 Diocesan Ministry of Christian Worship


In 2002 a man reported to the County Attorney's office that in 1985 Fushek was present in a St. Timothy's, Mesa AZ, rectory bedroom when another priest, Mark Lehman, sodomized the boy. The boy reported that Fushek "performed sexual acts on himself" while watching. Fushek was also accused by others of failing to report incidents of sexual misconduct by a Life Teen employee, who later pleaded guilty to sexual misconduct with a minor. (Arizona Republic
December 30, 2004) The diocese settled with the man in 2006. (Arizona Republic [Phoenix AZ]
December 27, 2006)

AZ Vicar for Liturgy






Lehman spent ten years in prison, was released in 2002, and laicized in 2006. (Catholic Sun

College of Consultors Phoenix AZ  


Presbyteral Council Phoenix AZ    


Thomas James Olmsted replaced O'Brien as bishop (2003- )

2005 St. Timothy's


Sued in 1995 by a former male Life Teen employee for sexual harrassment . (Arizona Republic
December 30, 2004)

In 2005 five men accused Fushek of having engaged with them in explicit talk about sex during confession, inviting a boy into his bed, "kissing and snuggling", and exposing himself, when the men were teens in the 1980s and early 1990s. (The Arizona Republic
June 2, 2006) Fushek was charged with contributing to the delinquincy of a minor, assault and indecent exposure. (East Valley Tribune [Mesa AZ]
August 15, 2006 )


1/3, 1/4, 1/5

Director of LIfe Teen Program, which he founded in 1985.

Beginning in the 2002 Directory, Fushek is referred to as "Rev. Msgr."

St. Timothy's had a religious education program with 2025-2100 students


The Directories list Fushek as on Special Assignment 1983-1989, and do not indicate where, other than his Chancery positions. News reports place him at St. Timothy's as early as 1985.

2000 2004 Vicar General   AZ    
2005 2008 On Leave   AZ  

Fushek was placed on leave in Dec. 2004 as a result of accusations of sexual misconduct. (Arizona Republic
December 30, 2004)

Fushek was excommunicated from the Catholic Church in Dec. 2008 for establishing and leading a non-denominational worship center. He was still awaiting trial on the 2005 charges. ( Dec. 16, 2008)

Source: Official Catholic Directory (New York: Kenedy & Sons, 1979-2008).

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 & 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.


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