.- Today Pope Benedict accepted the resignation of Bishop Donald E. Pelotte of the Diocese of Gallup, who has been on medical leave since last December.
Last July, Bishop Pelotte, the first American Indian bishop ever appointed, suffered from a fall at his home in Gallup, New Mexico. The fall caused head injury and heavy bruising across his face, chest, both arms, knuckles, legs, and feet.
While doctors and news agencies speculated that the injuries were more consistent with an assault than a fall down a staircase, the bishop insisted that he was not attacked by anyone.
A few months later, the bishop made the news again when he called the police to report four "gentle little people, about 3 to 4 feet tall, and wearing Halloween masks" who refused to leave his home.
The officers searched inside and outside of his home and found no intruders.
In December, Bishop Pelotte began medical leave and Bishop Thomas Olmstead of the Diocese of Phoenix was appointed to oversee the diocese of Gallup.
Bishop Pelotte has served the Diocese of Gallup since 1990.