“This decision indicates that anyone who goes into a Catholic church in Texas can be required to turn over his mobile device, the church can make a copy of all of its contents, keep them for an indefinite period of time, trounce private citizens’ constitutionally-protected civil liberties, and that the Catholic Church may do all of this without any practical justification whatsoever,” he said.
“And not only that, but that a Catholic bishop may publicly defame a Catholic to the media multiple times, and Catholic priests may freely manifest Catholics’ alleged sins to the entire world without any repercussion, either from the Vatican or the civil justice system.”
In a statement, Bishop Olson said he was “grateful” for the judge’s ruling.
“The decision vindicates our steadfast belief that this is a private Church matter that does not belong in the courts,” Olson said. “This matter will continue to proceed through an established canonical process.” He also asked for “continued prayers for the diocese, Mother Teresa Agnes, and all of the nuns at the monastery.”
A diocesan spokesman told CNA Saturday that the Arlington Police Department has also ended its investigation into the diocese's actions against the monastery.
"Following a thorough and extensive review by APD detectives, and in consultation with the Tarrant County District Attorney’s Office, we have determined probable cause does not exist to file criminal charges against any of the individuals involved. The case is now considered closed," the police department said in a statement the diocese shared with CNA.