Assignment Record – Bishop Lawrence Donald Soens
Davenport bishop was Ralph Leo Hayes (1944-1966)
|1952||St. Paul||Burlington||IA||assistant pastor|
|1952||1954||St. Ambrose Academy||Davenport||IA||teacher; vice-rector|
|1954||1958||St. Bridget||Victor||IA||assistant pastor|
Hayes was succeeded by Gerald Francis O'Keefe (1966-1993)
|1967||Regina High School||
• Court papers revealed in 2006 that the diocese started an investigation of Soens in 2002, after a former Regina student called the school repeatedly to claim that when he was a student in the mid-1960s, Soens would pinch his nipples and touch his testicles through his clothes. A member of Regina's school board then disclosed that when he was a Regina student Soens would call him to his office and pinch his testicles.
• In January 2005 the diocese revealed that in 2002 Soens was accused of sexually abusing minors in the 1960s when he was a Davenport priest, and that one of Soens' accusers received a $20,000 settlement.
• In March 2006 there were seven new claims of sexual abuse by Soens of Regina students in the 1960s. By 2006 Soens had been accused in 16 cases. By June 2011 Soens had been accused of sexually abusing 31 male minors, mostly stemming from his time at Regina High.
• In court papers related to one of the lawsuits against Regina High, Soens, and the Davenport diocese former Regina students in 18 sworn statements said Soens would frequently "purple" or twist boys' nipples, often in school hallways among groups of boys. Several of the former students said they thought Soens derived sexual pleasure from the "purpling". They said that Soens' behavior was common knowledge at the school. Soens stated in a deposition, when asked if he "purpled" boys' nipples, "I think I probably did."
• One former student said in a sworn statement that in the summer prior to his freshman year, Soens saw him mowing a lawn near the school and invited him in for lemonade; he said Soens then pulled down his shorts and tried to perform oral sex on him .
Soens' abusive behavior in the 1960s as alleged in 2002 by a former Regina student was determined in 2006 by a team of church officials to have been possibly inappropriate, but not sexual. The investigative team had been appointed by Davenport Bishop Franklin.
In Nov. 2008 the Davenport Diocesan Review Board determined that Soens was guilty of child sexual abuse at Regina in the 1950s and 1960s.
Former students said in the 2000s that they told Regina High School teacher Fr. Richard Bevenour about Soens' abusive behavior; Bevenour would respond by telling the boys to pray for Soens. They also said Bevenour would by them alcohol, which Bevenour has denied.
|1967||1975||St. Ambrose Minor Seminary||
• One of the men who claimed Soens sexually abused him as a high school student at Regina, accused Soens of also abusing him when he was a St. Ambrose seminary student and a minor. The man said Soens kicked him out of seminary school after he reported the abuse to authorities.
|IA||rector||The Davenport Diocesan Review Board determined in Nov. 2008 that Soens was guilty of sexually abusing the St. Ambrose student.|
|St. Ambrose College||Davenport||IA||faculty member|
|1970||1977||Diocesan Personnel Board||Davenport||IA|
|1975||1977||St. Patrick's||Villa Nova||IA||pastor|
|1977||1983||St. Mary's||Clinton||IA||pastor||Soens was made Monsignor in Dec. 1981.|
|1980||1983||Dean of Clinton||Davenport||IA||Appointed Bishop of Sioux City June 21, 1983, and ordained and installed Aug. 17, 1983.|
Bishop of Sioux City was Lawrence Donald Soens 1983-1998)
||Sioux City||IA||Retired Nov. 28, 1998.|
Daniel Nicholas NiNardo replaced Soens as bishop (1998-2004), followed by Ralph Walker Nickless (2005-)
|2012||Bishop Emeritus||Sioux City||IA||In 2008 Soens was known to be living in Holy Spirit Retirement Home in Sioux City.|
Source: Official Catholic Directory (New York: P.J. Kenedy and Sons)
• Bishop Accused of Sex Abuse, Retired Now, He Was a Priest in Davenport Diocese in '60s, By Shirley Ragsdale , Des Moines Register [Davenport IA], January 19, 2005