Will be updated with new information as it becomes available, most recent events at the top. To start at the beginning, scroll to the bottom and work your way up.
NOVEMBER 5, 2019 - DEPOSITIONS AND DOCUMENTS RELEASED!
Finally, the TRUTH is being revealed! Depositions and documents were released and discussed in the press conference on November 5, 2019.
Click here to view documents and depositions
Click here to watch the press conference
SEPTEMBER 10, 2019 - BISHOP HOEPPNER UNDER VATICAN INVESTIGATION
Bishop Hoeppner becomes first sitting U.S. Bishop under investigation by the Vatican under new misconduct protocols by Pope Francis.
See post from 9/11/2019 for more details
JULY 17, 2019 - FIFTEEN SURVIVORS REACH SETTLEMENT WITH DIOCESE
Fifteen survivors of child sexual abuse by predator priests were finally able to reach settlement with the Diocese of Crookston.
See post from 7/26/2019 for more details
NOVEMBER 27, 2018 - DEPOSITIONS CONTINUE
Depositions taken again of Bishop Hoeppner and Msgr. Foltz.
See clips of depositions here
OCTOBER 8-9, 2018 - DEPOSITIONS WERE TAKEN
Depositions were taken of Bishop Hoeppner (in Doe 457), Msgr. Grundhaus, Fr. Jerry Rogers, and James Clauson.
See clips of depositions here
MAY 31, 2018 - EVIDENTIARY HEARING DELAYED
Diocese of Crookston sent letter that they would have to file for bankruptcy if it was not delayed.
See post from 8/22/2018 for more details
FEBRUARY 23, 2018 - COURT ISSUES SCHEDULING ORDER FOR RON'S CASE VS. DIOCESE OF CROOKSTON
The times frame for pre-trial disclosure and discovery were issued. Jury Trial scheduled to commence March 13, 2019.
DECEMBER 11, 2017 - JUDGE MARBEN SCHEDULES EVIDENTIARY HEARING FOR SANCTIONS
On May 31, 2018, an evidentiary hearing will be held for sanctions regarding the Doe 19 case and the Diocese of Crookston not including Msgr. Grundhaus's name in the court ordered list of priests related to reports of abuse.
DECEMBER 8, 2017 - COURT ALLOWS NUISANCE CLAIM TO PROCEED
Judge Marben denied Diocese of Crookston's motion to dismiss Ron's negligence and public nuisance claims. These claims will proceed in the courts.
OCTOBER, 2017 - BISHOP HOEPPNER WITHHOLDS GRAVE INFORMATION
The charges against Bishop Hoeppner have been settled (max settlement and non-monetary exchange of letter collected by criminal investigation). Bishop never acknowledged to the people of the Diocese of Crookston, or the priests, that he was under a criminal investigation throughout the summer of 2017, that there was a search warrant issued due to evidence of a criminal nature, which obtained the 2015 letter. The letter and search warrant can be found on the home page of this website.
Question a priest might ask: Why did the Bishop not tell us about a criminal investigation, during or after its course?
Question a member of the diocese might ask: Why did the Bishop tell us he would try to tell us as much as he could, and leave that out? What else does he leave out of his statements?
The truth does matter.
OCTOBER 6, 2017 – BISHOP HOEPPNER HAS COLUMN IN OND REGARDING THE CASE
In this column, Bishop Hoeppner has multiple inconsistencies, and per his statement, acknowledges that he did not report allegations of Msgr Grundhaus to the appropriate church authorities.
See post from 9/30/2017 regarding diocese policies on reporting abuse.
SEPTEMBER 27, 2017 - BISHOP MICHAEL HOEPPNER RELEASES STATEMENT
On September 27th, Bishop Hoeppner released a statement wherein he acknowledges that meetings regarding the allegation took place with Ron Vasek in 2011 and 2015, further proof that Hoeppner was aware of the allegation against Grundhaus at the time of the 2015 court order. Bishop Hoeppner said nothing about the fact that release of the letter signed by Ron in 2015 was part of the settlements of counts 1 and 2 of the lawsuit. In May, he had said that he would do what he could to keep people informed on the case. The statement can be found here:
Question one might ask: Why does Bishop Hoeppner not release all of the information? Did he not say earlier that he would do all he could to keep us informed? What we are looking for is the truth, not partial truths, but the whole truth.
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 - THE LETTER FROM 2015 IS INTRODUCED AS EVIDENCE.
The letter recovered by a criminal investigation search warrant is introduced as evidence in court that Bishop Hoeppner knew of the allegation against Grundhaus, but his name was not on a 2015 court order to release all names credibly accused, OR RELATED to reports of abuse.
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 - 2ND HEARING WAS HELD TO CENSURE BISHOP FOR DISOBEYING COURT ORDER
Censure: official reprimand of disobeying court order.
The court order of Judge Marben from 2015, required release of all names of priests in the diocese with allegations of abuse against them, or anything related to alleged abuse. This list did not include Msgr. Grundhaus. The letter the bishop had in his possession was evidence of the bishop’s knowledge of Msgr. Grundhaus as an accused child molester and was withheld from the judge.
Crookston List as of Oct 25th. Msgr. Grundhaus's name is not on it.
Not only that, but this letter indicates that two more name are now on the diocesan list. They aren't on it either as of Oct 25th.
Multiple times the Bishop states that "The Diocese takes any allegation of abuse of a minor very seriously." ?????
Bishop Hoeppner has never publicly acknowledged this hearing in all of his official correspondence, despite his promises to keep everybody informed.
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 - COUNTS 3-7 OF THE LAWSUIT GO UNDER ADVISEMENT OF THE HONORABLE JUDGE MARBEN.
Judge Marben is taking under consideration the appeal of the diocese to dismiss the suits regarding negligence, nuisance and statutes of limitations.
SEPTEMBER, 2017 - BISHOP HOEPPNER TURNS OVER LETTER
Bishop Hoeppner turns over the letter as well as undisclosed monetary compensation to settle the first 2 of 7 counts of the lawsuit.
BEGINNING OF AUGUST, 2017 - CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION SURFACES LETTER
Search warrant was issued 8/3/2017 to search for a letter which was signed at the private residence of the Bishop. A letter was turned over to law enforcement officials via Bishop Hoeppner's lawyers from Rochester, MN.
JUNE 5, 2017 - CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION OF BISHOP HOEPPNER INITIATED
Even though the Bishop has stated he will keep the people informed as the matters move forward, the Bishop doesn't tell his priests, doesn't inform the people of the diocese that a criminal investigation is underway. Criminal investigation report found in post dated 10/10/2017.
Similar to the certified request for the return of the letter back in May, the Diocese does not answer the investigator's phone calls, does not return phone calls, and does not comply or cooperate with requests for the letter. ...until a search warrant comes.
MAY 9, 2017 - DIOCESE OF CROOKSTON SUSPENDS MSGR. GRUNDHAUS FOR THE FIRST TIME
Although the Bishop has known about this allegation of abuse for 6+ years, this is the first time that Msgr. Grundhaus has been suspended from practicing as a priest in the diocese. What Bishop Hoeppner knew about the Grundhaus case has not changed. The only thing that has changed is that the knowledge is now public.
MAY 9, 2017 - LAWSUIT GOES PUBLIC
Having attempted other avenues of resolution to no end, Ron Vasek emotionally shared his story live in the midst of multiple cameras and reporters regarding the lawsuit and actions of the Bishop and Diocese.
APRIL 29TH, 2017 - RON REQUESTS COPY OF LETTER HE SIGNED IN 2015.
Ron writes letter, which was sent by certified mail to the diocese, received on May 1st, asking for return of letter he signed in 2015. Diocese does not return the 2015 letter.
APRIL 6TH - RON AND PATTY MEET WITH BISHOP HOEPPNER
Ron and Patty met with Bishop Hoeppner to find out what is going on with the sudden change in plans for Ron's ordination. This meeting had no clear direction at its end. Both Ron and Patty left the meeting sick to their stomachs at the way they were treated by the Bishop who spoke down to Patty, laughed at Ron when Ron indicated that he was confused about all of this, and trumpeted his authority over Ron repeatedly. At the end of the meeting, Patty asked, "What just happened there?"
Bishop Hoeppner didn't bring clarity, but rather said he needed to speak more with others before deciding about Ron's ordination. This meeting made Ron realize the threat of coercion was being continued as the Bishop was clear that he controlled Ron's future as a deacon. He was no longer willing to be treated this badly. Something needed to happen. This was the last time that the Bishop was going to abuse Ron, and he decided to move forward.
MARCH 24, 2017 - RON MEETS WITH FR. ILANGO.
Ron meets with Fr. Ilango to find out what is going on. Fr. Ilango had not brought up these concerns in the past, and had been pastor of the parish for over a year. Why was Ron finding out about these grave concerns and questionable ordination without ever having a meeting with Fr. Ilango? What changed since last month when Ron was fully recommended for ordination after 5 years of preparation? What happened since a few weeks ago when Fr. Ilango was helping Ron pick out vestments???
MARCH 16, 2017 - FR. ROBERT SCHREINER CALLED FOR MEETING WITH BISHOP HOEPPNER
This meeting was attended by the Bishop, Msgr. Foltz, Fr Ilango, and Fr. Schreiner. At this meeting, Fr. Schreiner was presented with an unsigned, undated letter, with Fr. Ilango's name at the bottom indicating that Ron should be delayed a year for ordination.
MARCH 15, 2017 - RON'S RECOMMENDATION FOR ORDINATION IS JEOPARDIZED (UNCONFIRMED DATE)
A meeting is held regarding Ron's upcoming ordination (possible attendees: Fr. Ilango, Msgr. Foltz, Fr. Christianson and Bishop Hoeppner. unconfirmed). In this meeting, supposed concerns were raised regarding Ron proceeding with ordination. These grave concerns were not previously brought up in his Diaconate formation.
MARCH 10, 2017 - RON VISITS WITH PASTOR REGARDING ORDERING VESTMENTS
Ron visits with Fr. Xavier Ilango, pastor, about purchasing vestments for upcoming ordination. This interaction shows that at this time, Fr. Ilango continued to believe that Ron was a suitable candidate for ordination.
FEBRUARY, 2017 - RON IS FULLY RECOMMENDED FOR ORDINATION
Ron receives recommendation from Diocesan Diaconate Committee as well as recommendation from his pastor, Fr. Ilango, to proceed to diaconate ordination.
OCTOBER 21, 2015 2:00 PM- BISHOP HOEPPNER TELLS RON THEY MUST MEET AT BISHOP'S PRIVATE RESIDENCE
Bishop Hoeppner tells Ron that they must meet, this time at the bishop's private residence. Bishop Hoeppner presents letter for Ron to sign, indicating that it had been written by Msgr. Michael Foltz. This letter states that Ron recants allegations of abuse that were reported previously. Ron states this letter is false. Bishop threatens Ron's diaconate ordination and his son's priesthood in effort to coerce Ron to sign letter. Ron never received a copy of this letter at that time.
SUMMER, 2015 - DIOCESE OF CROOKSTON MUST TURN OVER, BY COURT ORDER, NAMES OF PRIESTS ACCUSED OF ABUSE, ALONG WITH ANYTHING RELATED TO ALLEGED ABUSE
According to the court order from the Doe 19 case, the Diocese of Crookston was required to release information “related to alleged abuse of children under age 18 by clergy, reports of such abuse, and priests accused of such abuse, occurring prior to 1985”. Ron’s allegation of abuse that was told to the Bishop 5 years earlier, having occurred in 1971, would have met the guidelines of inclusion in this report.
When releasing the names to Jeff Anderson & Associates per the court order, Msgr Grundhaus's name was not produced by the diocese, even though allegations were brought forward years earlier by Ron. Surely Grundhaus fits into the category of "related to alleged abuse" section.
What is more, the court order goes on: "This shall include all information in Dependent's possession concerning child sexual abuse by priests prior to 1985." Bishop Hoeppner clearly is a member of the Diocese, and clearly had information in his possession. If it was not written down, that is because he neglected to write it down according to the Diocese's own policy.
The Bishop did not follow the court order, and continued to cover up Msgr. Grundhaus's abuse.
This court order has not been referenced by the Bishop in any of his statements regarding the allegations.
The following are links related to the court order for your reference:
This shows that the order was filed on August 13th, 2015.
These go together, but are separated by a page turn in the file. They show that information should have been turned over about Grundhaus. Hoeppner has admitted to know of the allegation back in 2010/2011.
This is a receipt to attorneys of the filing of the order.
2010*- RON SHARES STORY OF ABUSE WITH PRIEST
As part of his preparation for becoming a deacon, Ron feels compelled to share story of abuse with a Fargo priest. Fargo priest shares story with Fargo chancery. Fargo chancery informs Bishop Michael Hoeppner and Ron. Hoeppner demands meeting at his office with Ron. The Fargo Diocese respected Safe Environment policies; Bishop Hoeppner did nothing, and instead of following policy, convoked this meeting without regard to the Vicar General of the Diocese of Crookston (prior, during, or after the meeting). In 2017 looks back and declares it was confidential. (see post from 9/30/17 describing diocese policies on reporting abuse)
* This date is referenced by Bishop Hoeppner as occurring in 2011.
2000S - FR. GRUNDHAUS APOLOGIZES TO RON
On multiple occasions, Grundhaus approaches Ron, apologized to Ron regarding the incident in Columbus, offers money to help, and Grundhaus admits it cost him as well.
1971 - RON ABUSED BY FR. ROGER GRUNDHAUS
While on a Canon Law trip to Columbus, OH alone with Fr. Grundhaus, Ron was sexually abused in their hotel room by Fr. Grundhaus.
DISCLOSURE: THIS IS NOT A CHURCH BASHING SITE.
Ron is a Catholic man trying to have the truth come out,so that the Church and diocese he loves be purified and healed.