By Meredith Rodriguez, Chicago Tribune
Seven men filed suit Wednesday against the Chicago Presbytery and related organizations, claiming they were sexually abused by a now-deceased minister whose trail of allegations led to a multimillion-dollar settlement.
The plaintiffs, three of whom filed one lawsuit and four who filed the other, allege that they were abused by Presbyterian minister Douglas Mason, whose alleged sex abuse led the presbytery to settle with four accusers in 2007. The settlement was confidential, but church officials told the Tribune last year that the amount was $11 million. Mason died in 2004.
In one of Wednesday’s suits, three men now in their 40s allege that Mason abused them from 1982 to 1986 while he was pastor at Austin United Presbyterian Church, where the three attended.
The Presbytery at the time encouraged pastors to counsel young men in private and ignored warnings that Mason was a pedophile, the suit claims.