Msgr. James Hayes – Diocese of Buffalo

| Oct 21, 2019 | Abuser Profiles, Catholic Church

Monsignor James Hayes

Diocese of Buffalo

Ordained: 1929

Died: 1988

Assignment History:

  • 1948                St. Thomas More (Ripley, NY) (Buffalo Missionary Apostolate, Missionary)
  • 1949-1953      Ascension (North Tonawanda, NY)
  • 1954               Absent on sick leave; St. Francis Hospital (Miami Beach, FL)
  • 1955               Absent on sick leave; Kenmore Mercy Hospital (Kenmore, NY)
  • 1956-1966      Ascension (North Tonawanda, NY)
  • 1967-1970      Our Lady of Victory (Frewsburg, NY)
  • 1971-1988      All Saints (Buffalo, NY)

Summary of Abuse Allegations Against Monsignor James Hayes:

In 1948, the diocese assigned Monsignor James Hayes to St. Thomas More in Ripley where he was in charge of the Buffalo Missionary Apostolate. He died in November 1988.  According to media reports, in March 2018, his name was included in the Diocese of Buffalo’s list of priests who “were removed from ministry, retired, or left ministry after allegations of sexual abuse of a minor.” No information regarding the allegations was disclosed, however, the list includes deceased priests only if they have more than one allegation.

In August 2019, a woman file a lawsuit filed under the NY Child Victims Act, alleging that Monsignor Hayes started molesting her when she was 8 years old while a student at All Saints in Riverside. She said the abuse continued through her eighth-grade year.

The woman said Monsignor Hayes would pull her aside in the hallways of All Saints School and kiss her. First, it was on the cheek. Later, it was on her mouth.

“I was a kid,” she said. “I was innocent.”

By the time she was in the fifth grade, she said, Monsignor Hayes would make her come to his office in the back of the church. He would force her to sit on his lap and molest her with his hands. She also said he forced her to perform oral sex.

In 2020, Fr. Hayes was named in another lawsuit against the Diocese of Buffalo. He was accused of sexually abusing a minor. The details of the sexual abuse allegations, including when and where the alleged abuse occurred, or the victim’s age/gender, are unknown.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims of sexual abuse in the Diocese of Buffalo and throughout New York. The Diocese of Buffalo filed for federal bankruptcy protection in February 2020. Anyone sexually abused by a priest or employee of the Diocese of Buffalo may be entitled to file a claim against the Diocese in these bankruptcy proceedings, but very strict filing deadlines apply. Most victims of abuse in the Diocese of Buffalo will never be able to take action against the Diocese of Buffalo if they miss this bankruptcy filing deadline, so it is important that you contact us immediately to discuss your potential case.

Contact us at 888-283-9922 or [email protected] to discuss your legal options today.