MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Former priest Tom Esch believes it was a courageous move for Archbishop John Nienstedt to apologize to parishioners at Our Lady of Grace church last weekend.

“I think, for many people, it helped.” Esch said.

Nienstedt was then accused of touching a young man several years ago during a confirmation ceremony photo session. On Monday, he decided to temporarily step aside pending the outcome of the investigation.

Esch said there is pain on every side of this scandal.

“There is pain from the victims. There is pain on the side of the leadership of the church. There is pain on the side of the priests who have abused,” Esch said.

He said there are also false accusations and a lot of what he called “reactivity.”

“Some claim that there’s too much accusation, too much reporting from the media, some would say there’s not enough,” he said.

Esch added that it may be impossible to make everyone happen in this situation.

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