Catholic Priest

Hermy Dave O. Ceniza


In 2010, a former altar boy files suit against the Fresno Diocese alleging that he was sexually abused in the early 1990s by Rev. Hermy Dave O. Ceniza at St. Francis Church in Bakersfield, California.  The victim reported the abuse to Bishop John T. Steinbock in 1993, who subsequently met with the victim and assured him Ceniza would no longer be a priest or have access to other children.  Church documents reportedly show that Ceniza was removed from Fresno Diocese, but in 2009, it was discovered that Ceniza was still an active priest in the Philippines, prompting the prior victim to file suit.  The lawsuit was voluntarily dismissed later that year after the diocese finally produced copies of Ceniza’s personnel file, which showed that he had, in fact, been removed from the diocese; however, it remains unclear how Ceniza was able to resume his priestly duties in the Philippines.