Richmond Catholic Diocese Receives Allegation of Abuse

Dates To 1970s

February 14, 2020 - 3:58 pm

(Matt Demlein, WRVA)


Richmond, Va. ( -  The Richmond Catholic Diocese says they have received allegations of abuse against a retired priest that date back to the 1970s.  The Diocese released this statment:

"A representative of a deceased victim has come forward with a report sharing allegations of child sexual abuse by Rev. Msgr. Raymond Barton. The report identified the victim and described details of the abuse. The incident is alleged to have occurred in the early-1970s.

The Catholic Diocese of Richmond has reported the allegations to civil authorities. Msgr. Barton, retired since 2011, is not currently serving in ministry. Msgr. Barton will not be permitted to engage in active ministry until the allegations are investigated and resolved.

Msgr. Barton was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Richmond in 1966. He served as an associate pastor at the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, Richmond, and as a faculty member at St. John Vianney Seminary, Goochland. He was a pastor at the following parishes: Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Norfolk; Saint Nicholas Catholic Church in Virginia Beach; and Holy Comforter Catholic Church in Charlottesville. He also served as a co-pastor for Church of the Holy Apostles in Virginia Beach.

Bishop Knestout remains committed to transparency and accountability when allegations of child sexual abuse are reported. He encourages anyone who knows of any misconduct or abuse on the part of a cleric or representative of the diocese to report it."

While the diocese does not say were the abuse occured, multiple priests tied to St. John Vianney have been accused of assault.  The school closed in 1978.