The Diocese of Helena has established a group of competent people to turn to for advice. As stated in the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, “Dioceses will have a review board that functions as a confidential consultative body to the bishop… The majority of its members will be lay persons not in the employ of the diocese… This board will advise the diocesan bishop in his assessment of allegations of sexual abuse of minors and in his determination of suitability for ministry. It will regularly review diocesan policies and procedures for dealing with sexual abuse of minors. Also, the board can review those matters both retrospectively and prospectively and give advice on all aspects of responses required in connection with these cases.”
Review Board Members:
Deacon Steve Barry
Steve is a graduate of Montana State University and Northwestern University Traffic Institute School of Police Staff and Command. He retired after 24 years of service as Deputy Chief of the Montana Highway Patrol; served as Human Resource Bureau Chief for the Department of Justice; and is currently Administrator of the Human Resource Division of the Montana Department of Corrections.
Ann grew up in Spokane, Wash. She graduated from Carroll College in 1989 with a bachelor’s degree in English and communications with secondary education and a minor in psychology. Ann taught middle school at St. Mary’s in Livingston before starting a family. Ann‘s primary vocation is raising her five children and being involved in their activities. She returned to teaching in the classroom in 2006. Over the past 20 years in Bozeman, Ann volunteered in numerous community organizations including: event coordinator for past Special Olympics Benefit Dinner, Pilgrim Preschool Board Member, past Montana Association of Catholics in Commerce event coordinator, ongoing involvement in Bozeman Public Schools. Ann and her husband, Deacon Steve Buckner, led Pre-Cana weekends for engaged couples and Resurrection Parish for 14 years.
Father Robert Grosch, JCL
Father Groschisch the Promoter of Justice for the Diocese of Helena. He acts as an ex-officio member of the review board, providing canonical counsel to accused clerics, a requirement specified in the Essential Norms laid out by the USCCB. At times, victims too will need to understand the canonical aspects of proceedings. Father Grosch will lend his expertise at all levels of investigation if an allegation of abuse arises.
Father Grosch is the pastor of St. Patrick Co-Catheral in Billings, Mont. (Diocese of Great Falls/Billings). He was ordained in 1974 and received his canon law degree in 1988 from the University of Ottawa.
Carol holds a bachelor’s degree from Trinity College in Washington, D.C., a master of science degree in biochemistry from Marquette University and a master of arts degree in marriage, family and child therapy from the California Family Study Center, now the Phillips Graduate Institute. Carol is licensed as a clinical professional counselor in the state of Montana. She is a clinical member of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. She is in private practice as a marriage and family therapist in Helena, Mont. Carol taught at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Mount Mary College in Milwaukee, Wis., and the College of St. Catherine in St. Paul, Minn. She was involved in religious education wherever she lived, including the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation in Eagle Butte, S.D. She was in hospice ministry at St. Peter’s Hospital, Helena, for six years.
Rosemary has worked for the past 27 years in the field of child protection as a social worker and supervisor. Currently she is the director of Catholic Social Services of Montana. She holds a master’s degree in counseling from Montana State University, and has been a licensed professional counselor. Rosemary serves on the Diocesan Stewardship Council and is vice president of the board of directors for the Florence Crittenton Home in Helena. She and her husband have lived in Helena since 1971, where they are members of St. Mary’s Parish.
Father Gary Reller
Father Gary Rellerwas ordained for the Diocese of Helena in 1971. He served several parishes in the diocese as associate pastor and was appointed pastor of Risen Christ Parish in Kalispell in 1978. since then he has served as pastor of St. Ann Parish in Butte, Immaculate Conception Parish in Polson with Sacred Heart in Ronan, and St. Anthony Parish in Missoula. He spent two years as executive director of the National Federation of Priests’ Councils in Chicago, and has been appointed or elected to a number of diocesan committees and boards. Father Reller is presently the Vicar for Clergy and chairs the diocesan Personnel Board. He is a current member of the Presbyteral Council and the College of Consultors.
William P. Driscoll
William Driscoll has been associated with the legal practice that has provided legal representation to the Diocese of Helena for over 50 years. Bill Driscoll, currently in his own legal firm, is the lawyer who handles most of the legal affairs of the diocese.
As the Victim’s Advocate for the Diocese of Helena, Helen Beausoleil coordinates assistance for the pastoral care of persons with claims of sexual abuse as minors by clergy or other church personnel: Beausoleil has 18 years of youth ministry experience at St. Mary Catholic Community in Helena and two years for the diocesan division of Catholic Formation Services, has retired after many years of service at Catholic Social Services for Montana and a holds a master’s degree in social work.
Bishop George Leo Thomas
Bishop George Leo Thomas became the tenth Bishop of the Diocese of Helena on June 4, 2004.
Bishop Thomas is not actually a member of the review board; in his capacity as bishop, the board exists to advise him.
Sister Rita McGinnis, SCL
Sister Rita McGinnis, SCL, is the director of Chancery Services for the Diocese of Helena, as well as the Pastoral Planning Services director and Diocesan Contact Person for victims and for the Safe Environment programs.
Father John Robertson
Father John W. Robertson is the Judicial Vicar for the Diocese of Helena and the Episcopal Vicar for Canonical Services. As such, he serves as an ex-officio member of the review board. Born in 1945 and ordained in 1971, Father Robertson graduated from Harlowton High School; Carroll College; the Sulpician Seminary of the Northwest (master’s of divinity), and the Catholic University of America (J.C.L. – licentiate in canon law).