Richmond bishop creates reconciliation program for abuse victims

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RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) – The Catholic Diocese of Richmond has established a program for victims of clergy sexual abuse. Bishop Barry C. Knestout announced details this week.

The program gives victim survivors an opportunity to receive monetary payment. BrownGreer, an independent claims administrator, will decide on the payment amount, which will not be rejected or altered by the Richmond Diocese.

This is a voluntary program. Anyone who meets the eligibility criteria and wishes to file a claim must do so on or before April 3, 2020.

“We will never be able to fully compensate for the harm done and we recognize there are many routes that might be followed to achieve justice. We believe this to be the best course for our diocese to reach a just reconciliation with our victim survivors.”

Bishop Barry C. Knestout

The program will be fully funded by the Catholic Diocese of Richmond, but will not use money from the Annual Diocesan Appeal or the Living our Mission Capital Campaign.

This is one of multiple steps Bishop Knestout says the diocese plans to take to further assist in the healing of people sexually abused as minors by Catholic clergy.

Visit for more information and frequently asked questions.

Monday’s announcement came just days after the Catholic Diocese of Richmond revealed allegations of child sexual abuse by Rev. Msgr. Raymond Barton, a retired pastor. Barton has several ties to Hampton Roads. He served as a pastor at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Norfolk and Saint Nicholas Catholic Church in Virginia Beach, as well as a co-pastor at Church of the Holy Apostle in Virginia Beach, according to a press release.

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