Former St. Louis Priest Gets Probation for Providing Teen with Drugs, Nipple Piercing

Categories: Crime, News

Here's the Archdiocese of St. Louis's full statement:

Fr. Charles Robert Manning, a priest of the Archdiocese of St. Louis, who had been serving at a parish in the Diocese of Colorado Springs, has been sentenced by a Colorado Springs court to four years probation for providing alcohol and marijuana to a minor. Fr. Manning was acquitted of sexual assault and possession of child pornography in July.

Fr. Manning served at several parishes in the Archdiocese of St. Louis before moving to Colorado, including: St. Alban Roe in Wildwood (1997-2001), St. Lawrence the Martyr in Bridgeton, which is now closed (2001-2004), and St. John in Imperial (2004-2007). There were no reports of abuse or complaints of abuse while Fr. Manning served in the Archdiocese of St. Louis.

Respect for those who are most vulnerable is a precept of our Catholic faith. Today, we pray for healing for the victim in this case and for God's hand to be on this situation. We ask that He may restore the faith and trust of this young person. We continue to pray for the safety and dignity of all children.

The Archdiocese of St. Louis encourages all persons with reports of misconduct with a minor involving a member of the clergy or other church personnel to contact Deacon Phil Hengen, Director of Child and Youth Protection, at 314.792.7704 or the Missouri Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline at 800 392-3738 or law enforcement officials.

Follow Daniel Wicentowski on Twitter at @D_Towski. E-mail the author at

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My Voice Nation Help

Something to keep in mind-
Child predators are very cunning and manipulative. They know every trick on how
to groom, threaten, lie, and put the fear of god into their victims and
sometimes even their family members.

They also appear to do a lot of goods things, they can be very charismatic and
you may think they would never harm a child. They have to be this way, in order
to not get caught and to continue to abuse

Sexual predators are often powerful and well-loved. It would be comforting if
those who preyed on the vulnerable were obvious social misfits whose appearance
would somehow set off alarm bells and give us the willies or the creeps. They
rarely do. Usually, predators are among the last people we would suspect of
sexually violating others.  While they are grooming the child and even family members, they
devote lots of time and energy building trust with them by giving them money and gifts.
They tend to make the child feel that they are special and loved.

Also, we must stop thinking that because a man is old, that somehow he's
automatically safe. It's just irresponsible to endanger kids by assuming an
adult is harmless simply because he or she may be losing hair, wearing glasses,
using hearing aids or walking with a cane. These can be signs of advancing age,
but they are not signs that an individual is safe around kids.

It is extremely rare that a child predator has only one victim. Some have many.
Child predators need to be kept far away from kids forever.

It takes a lot of courage to come forward and take action to expose the truth about being sexually abused. And let's hope that any others who may have knowledge or may have been harmed by Fr. Robert Charles Manning, will find the courage and strength to speak up and contact police, no matter how long ago it happened. Do not report your abuse to the church officials, they are NOT the proper officials to be investigating child sex crimes.
Silence is not an option anymore, it only hurts. but by speaking up there is a chance for healing, exposing the truth, and therefore protecting others.

Judy Jones, SNAP Midwest Associate Director, USA, 636-433-2511.,
SNAP (The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests)

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