The Next Step
February 2019
Archbishop's Letter
February 8, 2019
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ:

May God bless you! I have written on many occasions over the last several months about the sexual abuse of children in the Church and how the Archdiocese is responding in a pastoral way.

As part of our response, the Archdiocese of Louisville Sexual Abuse Review Board requested a careful review by an independent investigator of our records involving sexual abuse of minors by diocesan priests with a report of the findings. The investigator is Mr. Mark Miller, a former Assistant U.S. Attorney, former First Assistant Jefferson County Commonwealth Attorney, and former Commissioner of the Kentucky State Police, and he presented his report to the Sexual Abuse Review Board today. This report includes a list of credibly accused diocesan priests. In addition to Mr. Miller’s report, we also are releasing a list of credibly accused religious order priests . Because the personnel records for these priests are maintained by the religious order, we had only limited information for review, and so religious order priests are not included in Mr. Miller’s report. Many religious orders have published a list or are in the process of doing so, and we provided the web page for each religious order involved.

Several weeks ago, Mr. Miller shared his initial findings with the Sexual Abuse Review Board. During that meeting, I confirmed with him that he had received unfettered and independent access to what he needed to complete his work.

As this report is made public, there are two important points I want to make:

1)     The primary goal of releasing such a report is healing for victims. I have heard from survivors that releasing a list of credibly accused priests provides validation for the suffering that victim survivors have experienced and motivates others who have been hurt by a priest or other Church leader to come forward. With that in mind, I again urge anyone who has been abused by a representative of the Church first, to call the police and second, to contact our Victim Assistance Coordinator, Martine Siegel ( or 502/636-1044).

2)     This release is the beginning of a process of transparency not the conclusion. We do not know what we do not know, but we realize that we will likely learn more as a result of taking this action. Therefore, I expect changes and updates to the lists contained in this report.

I would like to say a word directly to victims of sexual abuse within the Church and beyond. Since statistics reveal that one out of every four women and one out of every six men experience sexual abuse by the time that they are 18, I realize that many among our parishioners, colleagues, friends, and family have been sexually abused as children or adolescents. I cannot begin to imagine the pain you suffer and the lifelong effects that you must deal with because of the terrible evil that was committed against you. I am deeply sorry for the times when our own Church—by denial, by apathy, or by placing blame elsewhere—added to your pain and caused you to feel revictimized. Please know that we are in solidarity with you, and your wound is our wound.

No child should ever be subjected to abuse, particularly by someone who is responsible for nurturing a child’s faith. We can only be healthy as a Church and as a society if we honestly confront the sexual abuse of children and rebuild relationships one at a time. 

As we take this next step in our journey of repentance, transparency, and solidarity with victim/survivors, please join me in praying for continued healing for those who have been wounded by the evil of sexual abuse.
Sincerely yours in our Lord,
Most Reverend Joseph E. Kurtz, D.D.
Archbishop of Louisville
Catholic Schools: Learn, Live, Serve, Succeed
The Archdiocese of Louisville celebrated Catholic Schools Week from January 27 to February 2. The following essay won the Catholic Schools Week Essay Contest sponsored by the Catholic Education Foundation for Catholic high school students in the Archdiocese. Holly Kissel is a junior at Presentation Academy.
By Holly Kissel

I have attended Catholic schools ever since Pre-K. Because of this blessing, I have been given a plethora of opportunities that have transformed me into the well-rounded person I am today. Catholic schools provide an excellent education, inspirational mentors, and many other resources that one could not find anywhere else, allowing their students to become outstanding leaders in their communities. My Catholic education has helped me grow as a lifelong learner and servant leader.

Education at Catholic schools is extraordinary, as it is focused on the individual student and his or her goals. The teachers take special interest in each student, learning their name and helping them on their path to success. Students are encouraged by the teachers to reach beyond the classroom, leading them out of their comfort zones so that they can become global citizens. Through trip to museums, theatres, historic sites, and festival of faiths, my Catholic education uses the entire city as a classroom, providing context and an engaging learning environment.

The experiences that I have been gifted with are almost all the results of having a Catholic education. I never would have met my best friends if I had chosen a public school.  It now seems impossible that I would never have had these people in my life, because they are the ones who give my life and my Catholic education meaning. In Catholic school, I am among my peers who share and help develop my faith. We attend Mass together, we go on retreats together, and we serve others together. The connections that I made in Catholic school with my mentors, peers, and God will serve me well as I continue on my faith journey and career.

Through extracurriculars offered by my school, I have had the privilege to connect with those younger and older than me, allowing me to see the rapid maturity that a Catholic high school gives someone. From freshman year where you are finding your footing in a new setting, to sophomore year where you are strengthening your relationships with others, to junior year where you focus on those who need more help than you to prepare you to be leaders in both high school and in your faith community, Catholic schools make it possible for you to find... Read More
Holy Trinity Clifton School set to Open in August 2019!
By Paula Watkins

Does your student have a language-based learning difference such as dyslexia, dysgraphia, ADHD and/or anxiety?

Are they feeling academically defeated and losing their confidence?

Could they benefit from a low student to teacher ratio in order to receive individual support?

Would you like to unlock their full learning potential?

If you answered “yes” to any one or more of the above questions then Holy Trinity Clifton School is the answer! Set to open in August 2019, the Holy Trinity Clifton School’s mission is to work in partnership with parents and Catholic parish communities, to build a strong spiritual and academic foundation for all students. We are dedicated to empowering students who learn differently to become confident and competent lifelong learners.

Starting initially with Grades 2, 3, and 4, and adding a grade each year, Holy Trinity Clifton School will offer a structured literacy program, individualized instruction in all academic areas, religion/sacramental formation, therapy, and intentional education in study habits, organization, and social/emotional skills. As we strive to make a Catholic education accessible to more children, our goal will be to operate at capacity as a full K-8 school.  All teachers will be certified Kentucky educators with specialized certifications to meet the unique needs of students. Additional services will be provided by an occupational therapist, speech therapist, and school counselor. Our multisensory therapy center will provide a space for movement, exercise, and mindfulness. Art and music will be co-curricular offerings. 

Our school is located at 2117 Payne Street in the Clifton/Crescent Hill area. The school is currently undergoing renovations to the classrooms, transforming them into state of the art, high-tech, and flexible learning spaces. 

Anyone interested in more information can contact Paula Watkins, Head of School at or call 502-896-8480. You can also find information at and click the “Clifton School” link at the top. We offer personalized tours and can mail additional information.
Archbishop's Tweets
Follow @ArchbishopKurtz on Twitter for more of his tweets.

February 11
"Can we get married at the beach?" Join me for Conversations as I answer this question and @reynolds_brian and I discuss marriage and weddings in the Church.

February 10
Youth of St Peter the Apostle Church receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit last evening. Alleluia!

January 31
More photos from Sunday’s Catholic Scout Awards Ceremony at the Cathedral

January 29
How uplifting to be with all the honorees at this year’s Catholic School Mass at St Albert the Great Church.
Upcoming Events
2/15/19 7:00 p.m.

2/16/19 4:00 p.m.

2/20/19 1:00 p.m.

2/21/19 3:15 p.m.
(See link for cost/registration)

3/1/19 9:00 a.m.
(See link for cost/registration)

3/2/19 9:00 a.m.
(See link for registration)

3/2/19 5:00 p.m.
(See link for cost/registration)

3/8/19 1:00 p.m.
Resources & Recommendations
This month, we're highlighting some helpful and timely resources for Catholics throughout the Archdiocese. We encourage you to check out the resources below.

Be Golden
Catholic Charities of Louisville has launched a community-wide campaign to contemplate and practice the Golden Rule: “Do to others what you would have them do to you.” Last week, Catholic Charities joined other community leaders to announce the Be Golden campaign with its aim of urging compassion for all, particularly immigrants in our community. For our local Church to participate in a special way this Lent, the Office of Worship and Catholic Charities prepared an invitation for parishes to Journey to be Gold through which we can all reflect on Jesus’ golden rule as we journey to Easter. The two offices have put together a packet of resources, including reflections on the Sunday readings, hymn suggestions, and intercessory prayers as well as a selection of Be Golden actions and service opportunity for parishioners. These resources are intended to help parish leaders easily incorporate Be Golden into Lenten programming and support and enhance liturgies and acts of service during this holy season. For more information, see here .

Conversations with Archbishop Kurtz
For the February episode of Conversations with Archbishop Kurtz , Chancellor Dr. Brian Reynolds and Archbishop Kurtz discuss marriage in the Catholic Church and answer some questions from viewers. Archbishop also welcomes guest Jessica Wade, a Focus (Fellowship of Catholic University Students) missionary serving at the University of Louisville.

Conversations airs on the Faith Channel (Spectrum channels 19 and digital channel 279) on Tues. at 7 p.m., Wed. at 10 a.m., Fri. at 7 p.m., and Sat. at 4 p.m. It is on radio stations WLCR 1040 AM, Breadbox Media, and WLHN 95.3 FM in Meade County. You may download Conversations for no charge through iTunes. Conversations also is available on Bardstown Cable Channel 19 (BRTV) at 7 p.m. on the first two Monday nights of the month and on Bardstown’s PLG TV on Tuesday afternoons at 4 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays at 11:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Conversations is online here .

Sexual Abuse
Archbishop Kurtz’s “Leadership Briefing” continues to update Catholics about the issue of sexual abuse in the Church. See all editions here
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