Lawyer calls on church to name abusive priests

Published 1:26pm Thursday, July 11, 2013

By Madeleine Baran
Minnesota Public Radio News

ST. PAUL — A man who claims he was sexually abused by a priest decades ago wants the Catholic Church to turn over the names of suspected pedophiles.

David Pususta said he was a 10-year-old altar boy when the abuse began in the 1960s. Pususta was living with his family in Waverly, a central Minnesota town where life revolved around St. Mary’s Catholic Church. Everyone trusted the priest, the Rev. John Brown — including Pususta’s parents. That’s how the abuse started, he said.

“He actually called up my parents, asked them if I would come up to the rectory,” Pususta recalled. “It was a warm summer night, I remember. And my dad was very religious. There was two powerful people in Waverly. There was the banker and the parish priest. Those were the two most powerful people.”

He said the Rev. Brown lied about the reason for the visit.

“He was going to talk about the birds and the bees,” Pususta said. “So he was even then, he was gathering the confidence from my parents, so I went up there. We never talked about the birds and bees.”

Instead, Pususta said, Brown touched him sexually.

Pususta said it happened several times, but he did not tell anyone because he was ashamed. He stopped going to church and stopped believing in God.

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