MACDEON, N.Y. (WROC) — A lawsuit filed on Friday named St. Anne’s Church, now known as Parish of St. Katharine Drexel in Wayne County, the most recent church being sued for sexual abuse.
The church is being sued by a South Carolina man who alleged that he was sexually assaulted by one of the pastors, Father Francis Vogt, while serving as an alter boy at the church when he was 9 years old.
Vogt had worked in several of the Rochester area churches for decades and has been named in other sexual abuse lawsuits.
Vogt retired in 1983 and died in 2006. The lawsuit alleges the abuse happened between 1977 and 1982.
The lawsuit cites several incidents in which the man was sexually abused by Vogt in both public and private places.
“When Plaintiff was approximately nine years old and serving as an altar boy at St. Anne’s Church, Fr. Francis Vogt sexually assaulted, sexually abused, and/or engaged in unwanted sexual contact with Plaintiff.”
The lawsuit cites several incidents, one in which it claims during a trip to the local YMCA, Vogt required all the alter boys to strip naked before they enter the public Jacuzzi.
The lawsuit also describes an incident in which Vogt invited the then 9-year-old to his house for some time to study the Bible. The lawsuit alleges that in this incident, Vogt sexually abused the child at his home.
According to the lawsuit, the man suing is seeking monetary damages in excess of $25,000.
The lawsuit lists Vogt’s history of employment from 1938 through 1983 where he was frequently reassigned to different churches to serve in the Rochester area. Because of these reassignments, the lawsuit claims the Diocese of Rochester knew about the alleged abuse.
New York State has already seen more than 1,000 sex abuse cases since August. Locally, so many lawsuits were filed against the Catholic Diocese of Rochester, that the organization filed for bankruptcy in September.