Fr. Joseph DeWater – Archdiocese of New Orleans

| Dec 5, 2020 | BANKRUPTCY

Father Joseph DeWater

Archdiocese of New Orleans

Ordained:  Unknown

Retired:  Unknown

Suspension pending:  2020

 Assignment History:

  • 1968-1971  St. Henry’s in Uptown (New Orleans, LA)
  • 1968-1971  Frances Cabrini in Gentilly (New Orleans, LA)
  • 1972-1977  Spiritual Director for the Catholic Committee on Girl Scouting
  • Our Lady of Prompt Succor (Chalmette, LA)
  • 1986-2001  Immaculate Heart of Mary (Louisiana)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Joseph DeWater:

In 2020, the Archdiocese of New Orleans announced an investigation into Fr. Joseph DeWater after allegations of sex abuse of a minor. 

DeWater has been suspended from performing any clerical duties, pending the conclusion of the penal process.

The Archdiocese of New Orleans has not released any information about the year DeWater was ordained. In addition, information about the age/gender of his alleged victim/victims, the nature of the alleged sexual abuse, or DeWater’s assignments at the time of the alleged abuse is unknown.

According to media reports, DeWater was working as a priest in New Orleans by 1968, serving at St. Henry’s in Uptown and St. Frances Cabrini in Gentilly from then until 1971.

Then, from 1972-1977, DeWater was the spiritual director for the Catholic Committee on Girl Scouting. DeWater hosted meetings with scouts, their parents, and counselors at Notre Dame Seminary often. His role mainly involved promoting participation in Girl Scouts to parishioners and their daughters.

Furthermore, according to media reports, DeWater was then listed as pastor of Our Lady of Prompt Succor in Chalmette, Louisiana for at least five years before leading the congregation at Immaculate Heart of Mary from 1986 to 2001.

In April of 2020, the Archdiocese of New Orleans filed for bankruptcy protection. As part of its bankruptcy, the Archdiocese of New Orleans will be reviewing and paying claims for anyone sexually abused by diocesan priests and lay employees. This will likely include claims filed on behalf of anyone whose case may be beyond the statute of limitations. 

According to the 2019 Official Catholic Directory, DeWater is now retired and lives in Voorhout, the Netherlands.

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].

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