Letter from 1989 Delbarton Grad

Mar 19, 2012 | All, Luke Travers

I am a 1989 graduate of Delbarton school and feel it is important to to make known the culture which existed at the school when I attended. There were many good people at Delbarton, and I am grateful to them for a good education. However,during my four years as a student at Delbarton, I experienced highly inappropriate misconduct by three different monks of St. Mary’s Abbey on several different occasions.

One of these monks provided alcohol to students and introduced sexually explicit conversations. Another would expose students to pornography in his office on a regular basis. And the third, Luke Travers, who was a mentor to me while I was head of Student Campus Ministry, made increasing physical advances toward me over my four years as a student and after graduation.

He constantly professed his love for me and, when giving me a hug of support, would kiss me on the neck, ears, and anywhere else he could before I pulled away. All of this came to a head when, after graduation, he made the strongest physical advances yet, and claimed there was nothing wrong with what he was doing because he loved me. He then said he would run away with me if I felt the same love for him. Shocked, I protested and pointed out that his actions and words were against everything he has supposedly pledged his allegiance to: as a teacher, a monk and a priest. He told me not to judge him.

So, having the opportunity to be a positive and supportive force in my young life, Luke Travers chose to do the opposite by imposing disillusionment on me through his sexual advances, lack of proper emotional support, and his constant selfish, inappropriate need for physical contact with young men. While I was a vulnerable young, teenaged student whose father was dying, Luke Travers took advantage of me and my situation to satisfy his own unhealthy needs.

After writing a letter of complaint to St. Mary’s Abbey, I have received the impression that Luke believes his actions were not inappropriate. It is my hope that Luke Travers, and those monks like him, will be called to their actions so that the students of Delbarton school may receive the education they deserve without abuse resulting from the sexual whims of monks who falsely claim to be responsible educators and mentors.

[Name Withheld]
1989 Delbarton Graduate