Letter to Abbot Hugh Anderson

As outlined above these are two of the most serious allegations that can be levelled against any religious leader in the Roman Catholic Church in America. Yet they are dismissed/ignored by you; which allows Archabbot Nowicki to continue exercise of his abbatial authority with an impunity comparable to that enjoyed by Robert Mugabe. – James Carr

Letter to Abbot Hugh Anderson from James Carr

Abbot Hugh,

This e-mail is addressed to you in your capacity as Abbot President of the American Cassinese Benedictine Congregation. While recognising that a significant amount of your ‘authority’ is honorific, what will be outlined hereinafter will and should be real of concern to you.

Archabbot Nowicki.

You ARE aware of the allegations of sexual misconduct that have been levelled against Archabbot Nowicki by a former junior monk. In the interests of procedural fairness, I will not explicitly name said junior monk, until the deliberations of the Dicastery for Religious have been concluded with respect to this allegation, but what I will assert by way of positive identification [ redacted ] .

As is widely known these allegations were discussed, as part of the deliberations of the conventional chapter at St Vincent, which re-elected Archabbot Nowicki.

Abbot Hugh, it’s respectfully suggested that Archabbot Nowicki should be invited to resign and/or step aside until the aforesaid Dicastery issues a Degree on the matter. Why have you not visited St. Vincent Archabbey, at any time, since the posting on the Behind the Pine Curtain website to address this most serious allegation to the entire community. When the posting was made, you did call Archabbot Nowicki, and have a telephone conversation about the matter. Why did you not visit?


Representations were made to you about this matter, please don’t be so churlish as to deny this; yet you choose and still continue to ignore with impunity, the allegation of sexual harassment levelled against Archabbot Nowicki. This can, and will be at the appropriate time evidenced in writing.

Furthermore, the Abbot President, at the time who ‘EXONERATED’ Archabbot Nowicki, Abbot Timothy Kelly, your predecessor in office is now the subject of litigation over allegations of sexual misconduct with an altar boy. This raises serious questions about Kelly’s probity; his motivation for the exoneration given to Nowicki; along with casting a very long and dark shadow over the scrutinium during the abbatial election at St Vincent.

Why has the allegation alleged by Mr. Mike Ference; that he was offered a bribe by Archabbot Nowicki to remain silent to protect Bishop Wuerl, when he was Bishop of Pittsburgh not been investigated by you?

Please be advised that Mr. Ference’s close relative was a solemnly professed member of the St Vincent Archabbey community, who was a hugely respected monk, and who at no time besmirched the fine reputation of St Vincent Archabbey.

As outlined above these are two of the most serious allegations that can be levelled against any religious leader in the Roman Catholic Church in America. Yet they are dismissed/ignored by you; which allows Archabbot Nowicki to continue exercise of his abbatial authority with an impunity comparable to that enjoyed by Robert Mugabe.

Like the gerontocratic, Zimbabwean leader, Archabbot Nowicki continues to issue diktats expecting his absolute authority to be dutifully obeyed by subjugated minions with the procedural norms found in the Constitutions of the Cassinese Congregation, have the same meaning ascribed to the Rule of Law in a Banana Republic in his eyes.

Fr. Becket G. Senchur.

Could you explain to the community at Archabbey, why Fr. Becket G. Senchur O.S.B. was not referred to the judicial competence of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith by Archabbot Nowicki, when this photograph emerged during the last visitation conducted by your predecessor, Abbot Timothy Kelly O.S.B. in 2008? If it was good enough for Gruber, it would have been good enough for Senchur.

Enclosed is an affidavit, which positively identifies Fr. Senchur in the photograph from the Village Voice URL made by District Attorney of Elk County within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in a private capacity. The gentleman in question is an alumnus of St Vincent College. Please feel free to call establish the authenticity of said affidavit from the gentleman concerned at his place of professional employment.



Additionally, please be advised that an authenticated copy of the original affidavit has been sent by registered mail to the following: the Cardinal Secretary of State; the Cardinal Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith; the Cardinal Prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education; and most importantly, the Cardinal Prefect of the Congregation for Religious, by registered mail with receipts for proof of postage.

Fr. Senchur has been positively identified as living in Massachusetts, how, is really none of your concern. What is your concern, and you may care to explain the following to the community at St Vincent: where and how Fr. Becket obtained the requisite funds to clear his mortgage of $91,000, obtained to purchase his house in Massachusetts in such a short period of time, (1996-2002), with the property still registered in his name. The only logical explanation was that the money was forthcoming from St Vincent Archabbey funds that were not properly accounted for.

Additionally, was Fr. Senchur permitted to function and practice as a priest with the Diocese of Fall River. Was a Decree issued by the Dicastery for Religious, permitting Fr. Senchur to reside outside St Vincent Archabbey, after Fr. Senchur had been absent from the monastery, after the expiration of the three year period? Could you also enlighten the community did the Bishop agreed for Senchur to be resident in his Diocese? These are just the basic procedural norms required by the Code of Canon Law, and which also find expression within the Constitutions of the Congregation.

You are duty bound to explain this to the monastic community at St Vincent Archabbey, as Fr. Senchur appeared in the American Cassinese Ordo, each year until 2011. If you knew nothing about said action, please explain to the monastic community the misfeasance of Archabbot Nowicki in this respect.

All this begets significant questions about the exact nature of the relationship between Archabbot Nowicki and Fr. Senchur.

This will do for the moment, but more to follow. At the moment only those who are members of the monastic community, recipients of this e-mail, apart from Patrick Marker, as he may wish to shed light on these allegations, given his stellar record in highlighting other misfeasance within this Congregation, with the scandal surrounding Fr. Luke Travers, being a recent example.

Thank you for your attention to this e-mail.

James Carr

PS. Could you ring and enquire of Archabbot Nowicki if Br. William D. Benthall was present at morning prayer. One would feel pretty safe betting a significant amount of money, he was not.