Former campus minister at Xavier accused of improperly touching minor

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - A former campus minister at Xavier University is being investigating for improperly touching a minor.

In April of 2011, the Maryland Province of the Society of Jesus received an allegation against Fr. Louis Bonacci that he improperly touched a minor in a family home in a period from 1978 to 1982.

Immediately upon receiving the allegation, the Society of Jesus reported it to the civil authorities; the Diocese of Scranton, where Fr. Bonacci was in ministry; and the Province Review Board. The Province leadership removed the priest from all ministry while the allegation was investigated.

Fr. Bonacci was a campus minister at Xavier University from 1994 until 1999. He also did his Sabbatical and graduate studies at the International Marian Research Institute at the from 1988 until 1994.

The civil authorities in Maryland indicated they would not begin an investigation until the now-adult victim contacted them directly. During this process, an allegation by a second individual was received by an investigator hired by the Review Board.  This second allegation was reported to the civil authorities.

Anyone who has additional information involving Fr. Bonacci or who suspects abuse by any clergy or employee of the Jesuits is asked to contact local civil authorities, and Maureen Locher, special case coordinator for the Maryland Province, at 443-921-1326.  Information on reporting and the Jesuits' commitment to child protection is online at

In a statement, the National Survivor Advocates Coalition based in Dayton, strongly urged the Maryland Province of the Jesuits and other officials to fan out this weekend to speak at Masses and specially called meetings in Cincinnati and Dayton and all other areas of the country where this priest was assigned to provide clear and unmitigated support for their words that they are deeply concerned about those who have been harmed.

Searching for those who have been harmed and providing the necessary climate for survivors and families members to come forward is what is needed," said NSAC spokeswoman Kristine Ward. "The Jesuits should post information about those who have been removed from ministry on its province websites. This puts words into action. In addition, we urge and invite the Jesuits to join us in the fight to extend statutes of limitations for the sexually abused in all of the states within the Maryland Province."

Today, Fr. Bonacci resides in a monitored residence with his Jesuit community. Fr. Bonacci entered the Jesuits in 1963 and was ordained in 1973. His ministerial assignments are as follows:

1968-1970: Teacher, St. Joseph Preparatory School, Philadelphia, PA

1970-1973: Student, Weston School of Theology, Cambridge, MA

1973-1974: Intern, Jesuit Center for Spiritual Growth, Wernersville, PA

1974-1978: Student, Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome

1978-1982: Assistant director of campus ministry, Loyola College, Baltimore, MD

1982-1988: Catholic campus minister, Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC

1988-1994: Sabbatical and graduate studies at the International Marian Research Institute, University of Dayton, Dayton, OH

1994-1999: Campus minister, Xavier University, Cincinnati, OH

1999-2003: Campus minister and adjunct professor of theology, Wheeling Jesuit University, Wheeling, WV

2003-2004: Campus minister, adjunct professor of theology and editor of Shepherds of Christ newsletter, University of Scranton, Scranton, PA

2004: Adjunct professor of theology, Misericordia University, Dallas, PA

2005-2011: Coordinator of spiritual direction for priests and deacons, Diocese of Scranton, Scranton, PA

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