Former OKC Priest Faces Another Sexual Abuse Allegation

Friday, November 16th 2018, 6:31 pm
By: LeighAnne Manwarren

A former priest is facing another child sexual abuse allegation, the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City reported Friday.

The archdiocese disclosed the first accusation against Benjamin Zoeller to the public in August.

In a letter dated Nov. 14, a victim reported a credible incident of child sexual abuse in the early 1970s while Zoeller was assigned to The Cathedral of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Oklahoma City.

Zoeller was removed as a priest in 2002 and was defrocked by Pope Benedict XVI in 2011. 

After the first allegation was made known, the archdiocese was told Zoeller had been volunteering at an Oklahoma City parish. He has since been informed that he is not allowed to volunteer or work at any parish or archdiocesan entity. 

The archdiocese is reviewing Zoeller's priest file as part of a comprehensive review by an independent firm.

A victim assistance coordinator has made contact with the victim, the archdiocese said in a news release.

The archdiocese strongly encourages anyone who has been abused or may know of abuse of a minor, to report it immediately. 

To report incidences of abuse by a priest in the past or present, contact the Abuse of Minors Pastoral Response Hotline at 405-720-9878.

The Oklahoma Department of Human Services has established a statewide abuse reporting hotline – 800-522-3511.