Benedictine College, a Roman Catholic institution in Kansas, announced Saturday it had removed its chaplain, the Reverend Simon Baker, from ministry and barred him from campus while it investigates reports of inappropriate conduct.
The college said in a statement that Father Baker disclosed to St. Benedict’s Abbey leadership in April “that he had engaged in inappropriate conduct with an adult, female student at the College. Following his disclosure, the Abbey convened its internal review board to investigate. The review board determined that Fr. Simon displayed inappropriate affection and favoritism toward the woman. The board recommended that certain boundaries be placed on Fr. Simon, and that counseling and support be offered to the female involved.”
“This week, immediately after the Abbey learned that Fr. Simon was not complying with these boundaries, he was removed from ministry,” the college said. “Since his removal, the College has received additional reports that Fr. Simon crossed physical and emotional boundaries in pastoral relationships with other adult women. At this point these reports do not involve a minor or any alleged criminal behavior. Benedictine College and St. Benedict’s Abbey are commencing a third-party investigation of these reports. Fr. Simon is prohibited from being present on campus pending the conclusion of the investigation.”
Father Baker could not be reached for comment.