Diocese: Diocese of Pittsburgh
From Report I of the 40th Statewide Investigating Grand Jury for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania:
Records from the Diocese of Pittsburgh revealed that in August 1991, a woman reported to the Diocese that she was sexually molested by Father Richard Scherer when she was a student at St. Anne. The abuse occurred between 1957 and 1961 at the church.
Records further revealed that in a letter dated October 24, 1965, Scherer wrote of his “revelation” of his nervous breakdown resulting from the “relationship” with the woman. It should be noted that no other documentation was supplied to the Grand Jury regarding a description or explanation of the “relationship.”
In a letter dated January 17, 1966, Scherer wrote about his continued improvement in health, body, and mind and stated that the “severe feeling of guilt” had left him.
In a letter to the Diocese dated April 5, 1966, Father Tobin from Our Lady of the Snow/Clergy House Retreat located in Minnesota wrote that he had been counseling Scherer for three months; that Scherer was making progress in the tensions that plagued his priesthood; that Scherer suffered a nervous breakdown; and, that involvement with the “young lady” was part of his emotional escape.
Additional information regarding the widespread sexual abuse of children within the Catholic Dioceses of Pennsylvania and the systemic cover up by senior church officials is compiled in the Pennsylvania Diocese Victim’s Report published by the Pennsylvania Attorney General following a two-year grand jury investigation. A complete copy of the Report is available on the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s website.