Waukesha Co. priest accused of sex abuse of a minor

GENESEE DEPOT (AP) -- The Archdiocese of Milwaukee has placed a Waukesha County priest on leave following allegations of sexual abuse of a minor.

An email from Archbishop Jerome Listecki says the Rev. Mark Molling of St. Paul Parish in Genesee Depot was placed on temporary administrative leave after allegations contained in the archdiocese's Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Molling denies the accusations.

Listecki says there's been no substantiation of the allegations, which will be reviewed by an independent investigator. The allegations were reported to the Waukesha County district attorney's office, which declined to file charges.

The Survivors Network for those Abused by Priests says it's not known whether the lack of charges was due to the statute of limitations. "There are people in the diocese, Catholics, who are concerned about children. The archbishop simply does not remove a priest from a ministry without a good reason," John Pilmaier, Director of SNAP Wisconsin said.

Some parishioners found out about this latest case of abuse within the Milwaukee Archdiocese during Sunday services."There are those who want to say the church has never changed, and every time an old case is brought up it almost seems like the church has done nothing to respond to that, when in fact, this diocese has done radical things to address it," Archbishop Jerome Listecki said.

St. Paul Parish did not return FOX6's phone calls requesting interviews Monday, but in a FOX6 interview, Archbishop Listecki addressed the continuing clergy abuse scandal. "If you look at the church today, there's more that's being done to create a safe environment in our schools today, than there is by any other institution in the whole United States," Listecki said.

A spokesperson for the Milwaukee Archdiocese says the abuse allegation involved is decades-old.

Meanwhile, Pilmaier says the allegation came as a result of the current bankruptcy proceedings involving the Archdiocese, and that this substantiates SNAP's fear that clergy members who are currently in active ministry could be among those who are accused of being sex offenders, but have yet to be identified.