Spotlight on abuse: Episcopal priest Bruce Wirtz

By | April 2, 2022
Episcopal priest Bruce Wirtz

An Episcopal priest who was removed from the priesthood in 1992 has now been accused of sexually abusing a child. Anglican officials must use all resources at their disposal to warn parents and parishioners and encourage others who may have been hurt by the priest to come forward and get help.

According church officials from the Episcopal Diocese of Western Massachusetts, Bruce Wirtz has been accused of sexually abusing a child while he worked at St. Peter’s Church in Springfield, MA in the 1970s. Though Wirtz passed away in 2007, we believe that it is likely that there could be still-suffering victims who have yet to come forward. We call on Episcopal church officials to use all available resources to share this news and encourage those with information to come forward.

Church officials indicate they have already informed parishioners at each location where Wirtz worked. We are grateful that they have taken this step and hope that they will keep the information about Wirtz prominently displayed on parish websites and in parish bulletins, alongside lists of local resources for survivors of sexual abuse and information on how victims can report to police.

CONTACT: Zach Hiner, SNAP Executive Director (zh****@sn*********.org, 517-974-9009)

(SNAP, the Survivors Network, has been providing support for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings for 30 years. We have more than 25,000 survivors and supporters in our network. Our website is

Reprinted with permission

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Eric Bonetti

Yeah that happened to the bishop in NW PA, where I grew up. The agreement was “make yourself scarce, and we won’t defrock you.” I suppose at the time it seemed fair to people, but these days being defrocked seems, itself, a rather mild outcome.


For such a small denomination, this church does seem to have a great deal of scandals unfolding.

Ye Watchers

I think you would find this is the tip of the iceberg.


That really saddens me. They seemed like such a socially minded community. In retrospect, though, I wonder how much of it was genuine, and how much was for show…


I was a camper (“conferree”) at the Saint Michael’s Conference when Fr. Bruce was on staff. Nothing here surprisesme.