Rev. Eldred B. Lesniewski

Summary of Case: Lesniewski's name appeared on a list released by the Milwaukee archdiocese in 2004 of 43 priests who were fully restricted from ministry because of credible allegations of sexual abuse of minors against them. Lesniewski is said to have sexually abused children who resided at the orphanage where he was Chaplain from 1960-1968. One Lesniewski accuser sued the archdiocese in 1992.

: 1953
Retired: 1992
Died: Aug. 22, 1996


Start Stop Parish Town/Accusations State Position Notes


Milwaukee archbishop was Albert Gregory Meyer (1953-1958)

1955 St. Stanislaus (Polish) Racine WI 2/2 Parish had a school with 227-188 students.
1955 1957 St. Stanislaus (Polish) Milwaukee WI 5/5, 5/6 Parish had a school with 434-414 students.
1957 1958 Our Lady, Queen of Peace Milwaukee WI 2/2 Parish had a school with 473 students.


New York archbishop was Francis Joseph Spellman (1939-1967)

1960 Fordham University New York NY    


William Edward Cousins succeeded Meyer as Milwaukee archbishop (1958-1977)

1968 St. Joseph's Home for Children


Lesniewski is accused of having sexually abused children at this orphanage. One accuser filed a civil complaint against the archdiocese in 1992. (February 10, 2004 by
Peter Isely
Jim Smith)

WI Chaplain St. Joseph's was a residential facility with 90-45 children.
1962 1980 Catholic Social Services     Assistant Director 1962-1969; District Offices Executive Director 1969-1980.  


Rembert George Weakland, O.S.B. replaced Cousins (1977-2002)

1980 St. Ann's Rest Home Milwaukee WI Chaplain  
1980 1986 Blessed Sacrament Milwaukee WI 1/3, 1/2 Parish had a school with 504-458 students.
1986 1990 Immaculate Conception Juneau WI 1/1, 1/2  
1990 1992 St. Alexander's/Absent on Sick Leave Milwaukee WI


In residence.

Parish had a school with 225 students.
1992 1996 Retired St. Francis WI  

Address given is 3253 S. Lake Dr., St. Francis WI

Lesniewski died Aug. 22, 1996


Source: Official Catholic Directory (New York: P.J. Kenedy and Sons, 1954-1996)

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 Lesniewski'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 April 14, 2011

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