Allegations of sexual abuse against Charles Eckermann have been found credible by both the diocese and the Vatican, and Eckermann has been permanently removed from priestly ministry, the Diocese of Syracuse confirmed Oct. 2.
“The diocese received an allegation of abuse from nearly 30 years ago against Charles Eckermann. The diocese was notified of this allegation by Mr. Kevin Braney in 2013 and followed the process of our Child and Youth Protection Policy and the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People,” the diocese said in a statement.
Eckermann, 83, was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Syracuse in 1956. He served at parishes throughout Syracuse and in Binghamton, retiring from St. Ann’s Church in Manlius in 2001. He also served as the diocese’s director of planned giving and as a faculty member and principal of Bishop Ludden Jr./Sr. High School. He was named a monsignor in 1973.
“The accused was removed from ministry while the allegation was investigated,” the statement said. “The report was sent to the Diocesan Review Board, which found the allegation to be credible. Eckermann’s canonical case was sent to Rome, who has affirmed the decision. Eckermann will no longer be able to function as a priest, wear clerical garb or present himself as a priest. He is to live a life of prayer and penance.”
Assistant Chancellor and Director of Communications Danielle Cummings emphasized the diocese’s ongoing commitment to protecting the safety of children and youth, affirming that the diocese does not tolerate sexual misconduct, assault or exploitation by priests, deacons, diocesan lay employees, volunteers, or members of a diocesan community in any form. To report known or suspected abuse, contact law enforcement and the diocesan Victim Assistance Coordinator at (315) 470-1465.