Loading
Albany Bishop will not defrock priests; ‘Formal and public removal from ministry is sufficient punishment’
Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest Addthis

.- Bishop Howard Hubbard of the Catholic Diocese of Albany, NY has decided that he will not laicize 13 priests in the diocese who were involved in the Church’s priestly sexual abuse scandal, saying that public removal from ministry is a just punishment. "I believe, he said, according to the Times-Union newspaper that, “after reflection and consultation with the misconduct board and my canonical advisers, that the formal and public removal from ministry is sufficient punishment for the priest and adequate protection for the community."

The bishop’s decision means that the priests can live out the remainder of their lives with diocesan pensions and health insurance in place.

Although some have criticized the bishop’s stance, he clarified that, "that's the route I have taken…in accordance with the charter [of the U.S. Bishops] and canonical laws of the church."

Bishop Hubbard, who has said he has reservations about certain aspects of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishop’s zero tolerance, one-strike-you’re-out policy, said that, "If I found that anyone who had received this punishment had presented himself as a priest, publicly, then I still have the step of laicization. I haven't ruled out that option, and it is still available.”

So far, 20 priests of the Albany Diocese have been removed from public ministry and nine others are currently under investigation.

Fr. John Patrick Bertolucci is one of the 13 priests who had been publicly removed from ministry. Now living a life of what he calls prayer and reflection in his family home in New York’s Catskill mountains, he told the Times-Union that, "The most powerful form of penance I can do is to pray for the healing and reconciliation of any person I have sinned against and any person I have misled by my misconduct.”

"I believe that my bishop is wise in keeping open a line of communication with priests who have engaged in misconduct, rather than removing any canonical, jurisdictional oversight, which laicization would do."

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
Christ Cathedral CNA video Sept 2014
Alejandro Bermudez of CNA accepts ice bucket challenge
'The Real Albania,' remembering those who fled
Pope Francis in Albania, "one of the most important visits of the post-communist era in Albania"
Pope Francis greets paralyzed man who risked all to see him
Franciscans on the banks of the Tiber in Rome, working for the New Evangelization
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea
The tombs of the early Christians
Missionaries of Africa, called "the White Fathers"
Italian youth give testimony after mission to Peru
Interview with Iraqi Ambassador to the Holy See on the persecution of Christians
New book 'The Vatican unknown'
Oct
22

Liturgical Calendar

October 22, 2014

Wednesday of the Twenty-Ninth Week in Ordinary Time

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Lk 12:39-48

Gospel
Date
10/22/14
10/21/14
10/20/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Eph 3: 2-12
Gospel:: Lk 12: 39-48
Gospel:: Lk 12: 39-48

Saint of the Day

St. Romuald »

Saint
Date
10/22/14

Homily of the Day

Lk 12:39-48

Homily
Date
10/22/14
10/21/14
10/20/14