Fr. William D. Lum – Diocese of Rochester

William Lum Horowitz Law

Father William D. Lum
Diocese of Rochester

Ordained: 1969
Administrative leave: 1997, 2002

Assigned as follows:

  • 1970-1973: St. Margaret Mary, Rochester, NY
  • 1974-1975: St. Louis Church, Pittsford, NY
  • 1976-1990: Newman Community University of Rochester, Inc., Rochester, NY
  • 1986-1990: NY Office of Campus Ministry, Rochester, NY
  • 1991: Holy Cross, Rochester, NY
  • 1992-1996: Our Lady of Mercy, Rochester, NY
  • 1997-1999: Absent on Leave, Diocese of Rochester
  • 2000-2001: Graduate Studies, Diocese of Rochester
  • 2002: Special Assignment, Diocese of Rochester

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father William D. Lum:

Father William D. Lum was placed on leave by the Diocese of Rochester in 1997 after allegations of child sexual abuse were made against him.

That same year, Lum was arrested and pleaded guilty to misdemeanor sexual abuse of a 16-year-old-old boy that occurred in 1992. Lum admitted that he touched the genitals of the victim in the rectory of Our Lady of Mercy Church in Greece.

Rather than receive prison or probation time, he was given conditional discharge and ordered to stay away from the victim, who was 21 at the time of the plea.

Despite the conviction, Lum was allowed to continue to perform administrative duties for the Diocese of Rochester until 2002 when he was again placed on leave without privileges because a civil suit was filed against him and the Diocese of Rochester.

The suit was filed by the same victim from 1997 and was dismissed by the Appeals court in 2002 as to Diocese and church but not Lum due to the expiration of the statute of limitations. On behalf of Lum, the Diocese of Rochester settled for counseling fees.

Lum never returned to ministry and was sentenced to a life of prayer and penance by the Diocese of Rochester, likely in lieu of his forced laicization. Although Lum no longer works as a parish priest, his last known location was in the rectory of a Rochester church and he was splitting his time between Rochester and Ottawa, Canada, where he was studying for a graduate degree.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims of sexual abuse in the Diocese of Rochester.  The Diocese of Rochester in New York filed for bankruptcy protection in 2019.  Our lawyers are now offering free legal consultations to discuss a potential lawsuit and your other options as a survivor of sexual abuse by priests and other employees of the Rochester Diocese.  

Very strict filing deadlines have now been set by the Bankruptcy Court.  Most victims of abuse will never be able to recover damages if they miss this deadline, so please contact us to discuss your case today.    Call us at (888) 283-9922 or send an e-mail to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com.