Fr. Bernard Schmaltz – Archdiocese of New Orleans

| May 24, 2020 | Abuser Profiles, Catholic Church

Father Bernard Schmaltz

Archdiocese of New Orleans

Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux

Ordained: 1973

Died: 2010

Assigned as follows:

  • St. Clement of Rome (Metairie, LA)
  • St. Gabriel the Archangel (New Orleans, LA)
  • Annunziata (Houma, LA)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Bernard Schmaltz:

According to media reports, in 1992, Father Bernard Schmaltz was accused in a lawsuit of sexually abusing a man when he was a 13-year-old eighth-grade student at St. Clement of Rome during the 1973 to 1974 school year. The alleged abuse occurred while on a fishing trip to Slidell and at a rectory. The suit said the boy told several people, including the pastor. Father Schmaltz denied the allegation and was placed on paid leave from his post as pastor of St. Gabriel.

Father Schmaltz retired in 1993. He said allegations of sexual abuse had tainted his priesthood. He had also denied any wrongdoing in the face of an allegation reported in the 1970s which involved a 7-year-old boy in Metairie. He believed his ministry could never recover from the allegations.

In an August 1995 trial, the judge ruled the plaintiff had waited too long to file suit. However, the Vatican ordered Father Schmaltz to stand a church trial. He was subsequently removed from ministry within the Houma-Thibodaux Diocese.

In January 2004, the Archdiocese of New Orleans announced it had received an accusation that Father Schmaltz molested a child while he served as a priest in Metairie in the 1970s. He later filed suit against the archbishop for defamation and invasion of privacy.

He died in 2010, having never returned to the priesthood. According to his obituary, he transitioned into real estate in Mississippi.

In November 2018, Father Schmaltz’s name appeared publicly on the Archdiocese of New Orleans’ list of clergy credibly accused of sex abuse of minors.

In January 2019, his name appeared on the Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux’s list of clergy credibly accused of child sex abuse.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims of sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of New Orleans.  The Archdiocese of New Orleans filed for federal bankruptcy protection in April 2020.  Our lawyers are now offering free legal consultations to discuss your legal options as a survivor of sexual abuse by priests and other employees of the New Orleans Archdiocese.

Very strict filing deadlines will soon be set by the Bankruptcy Court.  Most victims of abuse will never be able to recover damages if they miss this deadline, so please contact us to discuss your case today.  Call us at 888-283-9922 or send an e-mail to [email protected].