Angelo Zankl, OSB: Clergy With Credible Claims Against Them Concerning Sexual Abuse of a Young Person

Angelo Zankl, OSB


Father Angelo Zankl, was born as Gerard Zankl on April 19, 1901 in Almena, Wisconsin. In 1913 he attended St. John’s Preparatory School and graduated in 1918. He then earned a bachelor’s degree at St. John’s University in 1923. Fr. Zankl entered the monastery as a novice in July 1920 and was given the name Angelo by Abbot Peter Engel. Fr. Zankl professed monastic vows on July 11, 1921 and went on to study at St. Anselm’s College in Manchester, New Hampshire, Notre Dame University in South Bend, Indiana, and St. Vincent Pontifical Seminary in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. Fr. Zankl was ordained a priest on May 29, 1926.

Father Zankl worked in various parishes throughout Minnesota and is included on an official list of the Diocese of Duluth of clergy members who have been credibly accused of child sexual abuse. The Diocese of Duluth list (released 12/31/2013) and our investigation revealed the following locations where Father Zankl worked:

  • 1929: Pastor, St. Mary’s Hospital, Duluth, MN. Also served as Pastor at a small rural parish in Crosby, MN
  • 1930 – 1932: Associate Pastor in Mandan, ND
  • 1932: Returned to St. John’s Abbey as a teacher
  • 1932 – 1938: Dean of Men, St. John’s Abbey, Collegeville, MN
  • 1939: Associate Pastor in Detroit Lakes, MN
  • 1939 – 1940: St. Bernard’s, St. Joseph, MN – Also taught and assisted in a nearby church
  • 1945 – 1946: Hospital Chaplain, Sioux Falls, SD
  • 1946 – 1950: Teacher, St. John’s University, Collegeville, MN
  • 1950: Resumed pastoral work in Bejou Township, Mahnomen County, MN
  • 1951 – 1967: St. Clements, Duluth, MN
  • 1967: Returned to teaching and served as Chaplain, Benedictine Sisters at Mount St. Benedict, Crookston, MN
  • 1967 – 1972: Teacher, Corbett Junior College, Crookston, MN
  • ? – ?: Chaplain: Assumption Nursing Home, Cold Spring, MN for 2 years. Exact dates unknown.
  • 1974 – 1987: Chaplain: St. Scholastica Priory, Duluth, MN

Father Zankl left the Diocese of Duluth on May 30, 1987 and returned to St. John’s Abbey on June 1, 1987 where he lived until he died at the age of 106 on July 12, 2007. Father Zankl is not included on the St. John’s Abbey list released on 12/19/2013.

Efforts to unseal the secret documents regarding clergy sexual abuse in the Diocese of Duluth began with the first lawsuit filed in June 2013. Since then, survivors have taken numerous actions to make the files public.

In October 2015, a jury verdict was handed down against the Diocese of Duluth in a child sexual abuse case in Ramsey County involving Fr. James Vincent Fitzgerald. On December 7, 2015, the Diocese of Duluth filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

More information on the Diocese of Duluth bankruptcy can be found at: <href=”#tab_duluth”>

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