Province News

Statement in Response to Jesuit UCS Province Personnel Audit

On November 16, 2018, the Jesuits U.S. Central and Southern Province (UCS Province) released a statement announcing the retention of an outside organization, Kinsale Management Consulting, Inc., to review all personnel files of Jesuits since 1955. 

This audit has resulted in a list of Jesuits and former Jesuits of the Province against whom there are credible allegations of abuse of a minor consistent with the standards of the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People. All Jesuits missioned to De Smet have been assigned through the UCS Province, formerly called the Missouri Province, of the Society of Jesus. 

Today (December 7, 2018), the UCS Province released the preliminary list of Jesuits and former Jesuits credibly accused of sexual abuse of minors. The preliminary report may be read here, and the final report will be released in Spring 2019. 

The following individuals named in the preliminary report served at De Smet Jesuit:

Gerhardt B. Lehmkuhl, S.J.
Tenure at De Smet Jesuit: 1971-1979
Estimated timeframe of abuse: 1990s
Removed from Jesuit Ministry in 2002
Died in 2012

James L. McShane, S.J.
Tenure at De Smet Jesuit: 1983-1990
Estimated timeframe of abuse: 1950s
Deceased when allegations received
Died in 1993

While the aforementioned individuals were assigned to De Smet Jesuit, we do not have any evidence at this time that the alleged abuse took place during their tenure at De Smet. We will be working with the UCS Province and Kinsale Management Consulting, and we will share any new information as it develops.

De Smet Jesuit High School stands in solidarity with victims of this horrible abuse. We urge anyone who has felt victimized by a De Smet Jesuit employee, whether a Jesuit or lay person, past or present -- or anyone who has pertinent information – to contact local law enforcement and any of the following resources:

Creve Coeur Police Department Investigations Unit 
Detective Damon Anthony 
314-872-2544 or  

United States Central and Southern Province
Carol Brescia, Licensed Clinical Social Worker
314-915-7168 or send an email to this confidential address:  

Archdiocese of St. Louis Office of Child and Youth Protection
Sandra Price, Executive Director
314-792-7704 or

In addition to these resources, you may reach out to De Smet Jesuit Principal Kevin Poelker at 314-343-6462 or

The path to reconciliation begins with transparency, and we are committed to keeping the De Smet Jesuit community informed on this topic as we learn more.