Fr. James Beck: Accused of Sexual Misconduct

Fr. James Beck


  • 1969 1977: James Beck Holy Name Parish, Sheboygan
  • 1977 1978: St. Robert Parish, Shorewood
  • 1978 1984: St. James Parish, Mequon
  • 1984 1989: St. Catherine Parish, Granville

James Beck Documents  | James Beck Timeline

In May, 1988, during the course of confronting an allegation of a 1982 incident, Beck admitted to Bishop Sklba a previous 1971 incident without providing any more details than that he was in mandatory counseling and had been on probation. The Ozaukee County authorities were notified and conducted an investigation on behalf of the Rusk County authorities. During the course of that investigation Beck was not removed from his assignment.

Ann Campion who was investigating the case spoke with Bishop Sjklba in July, 1988 and expressed approval of how the matter was being handled and indicated that no further action on their part would happen. Beck was told to continue with the restrictions that were in place. He was ordered to continue having no unsupervised contact with minors. He was asked to resign from his pastorate in December, 1988. A professional evaluation was conducted with potential for non-parochial assignment.

In 1990, Beck was placed on administrative leave for eight months with the commencement of a civil suit. In 1992, it was determined that Beck would no longer function in any ministerial capacity. Between 1992 and 1995, negotiations with his canonical counsel to resolve the issue, finally resulted in a legal contract binding Beck not to exercise any ministry, not to present himself as a cleric, and to pursue alternate career options. Assistance in career re-training was provided by the archdiocese.

In 2004, in light of a new file review and canonical norms, the case was referred to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Given the circumstances of Beck’s life and health, it was petitioned that he live out the remainder of his life in prayer and penance. This request was granted.

Pastoral Assignment Gathered From The Archdiocese of Milwaukee