Father Christopher Springer
Diocese of Baton Rouge (Redemptorists)
Assigned as follows:
- St. Gerard Magella (Baton Rouge, LA)
- St. John the Evangelist (Plaquemine, LA)
- Immaculate Heart of Mary (Maringouin, LA)
- St. Mary of False River (New Roads, LA)
- St. Pius X (Baton Rouge, LA)
- Our Lady of Perpetual Help (Jackson, LA)
- Our Lady of the Assumption (Clinton, LA)
- East Louisiana State Hospital (Jackson, LA)
- Dixon Correctional Institute (Jackson, LA)
- Feliciana Forensic Unit (Jackson, LA)
- Pointe Coupee Church, Our Lady of Lourdes (Slidell, LA)
- St. Alphonsus Parish (New Orleans, LA)
Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Christopher Springer:
Father Christopher Springer (aka Cristoff Joseph Springer) was a Redemptorist priest ordained in 1952. He knew sign language and often worked in deaf communities. He served in multiple parishes in the Diocese of Baton Rouge. According to media reports, in 1973, the head of the Redemptorists wrote that Father Springer was “causing much harm to the members of the community” and “has tried to maneuver people so that he could do his ‘own thing.’” Despite this, the order gave him a “clean bill of health” and, that year, he was incardinated into the Diocese of Baton Rouge.
In 1985, Father Springer was removed from ministry about two or three months after complaints of “improper actions” were reported. He was ultimately laicized in 1990, as a result of dozens of allegations of child sexual abuse of boys as young as 9 years old, between the late 1960s through the 1980s.
The first allegation against Father Springer was reported in 1981. The first lawsuit was filed in 1994. More suits followed throughout the years, and in 2006, ten lawsuits were filed. The victims claimed the abuse caused deep emotional scars “so severe as to constitute a disability.” Some were settled.
“These victims were left alone to deal with the psychological, social and economic consequences of being raped as a child,” the attorney said.
In March 2009, Father Springer confessed in an affidavit to molesting more than 30 children. It is believed he abused hundreds more. He wrote that as a seminarian, he himself was molested by a Redemptorist priest who was his Latin teacher. He said the abuse began when he was 12 or 13 years old.
He wrote, “I got a dispensation from the Redemptorists without the Redemptorists telling the diocese that I had needed help.”
He also stated that then-Bishop Stanley Joseph Ott, of the Diocese of Baton Rouge, met with him in late 1984 and recommended he go to a church-run treatment center in Florida for troubled priests.
“I assumed at the time that Bishop Ott knew that I was sexually abusing boys,’’ Father Springer wrote.
“He’s a notorious, serial predator and an extremely dangerous man,” said Barbara Dorris, the executive director of theSurvivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP).
In January 2019, Father Springer’s name appeared publicly on the Dioceses of Baton Rouge, Corpus Christi, and Galveston-Houston’s lists of clergy credibly accused of sex abuse of minors. In June 2019, his name appeared publicly on the Archdiocese of New Orleans’ updated list of clergy credibly accused of child sex abuse.
Father Springer is believed to be currently living in the St. Tammany Parish community of Pearl River, LA.
Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Baton Rouge in Louisiana. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Louisiana, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Baton Rouge may now have legal options, but filing deadlines will apply so do not delay in reaching out to us. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in Louisiana and nationwide. We can help.