CNA Staff, Nov 21, 2023 / 14:45 pm
A man calling himself “Father Martin” attempted to infiltrate several Texas parishes last month and reportedly succeeded in stealing several hundred dollars from one Houston parish, with the scam prompting a security warning from one of the state’s dioceses.
On Oct. 25, a person who identified himself as a visiting priest named “Father Martin” showed up at six different parishes in the Diocese of Dallas, according to diocesan spokeswoman Katy Kiser.
“He raised suspicion to our parish staff because we follow a Safe Environment protocol, which requires priests from outside our diocese to come with a suitability letter, but also we work often enough with priests from other dioceses to understand that this didn’t seem legitimate, so these encounters were reported to our Office of Security and Emergency Management at the diocese,” Kiser told CNA.
The diocesan security office subsequently reported “Father Martin” to local law enforcement because the encounter “seemed suspicious to our parish staff.” Kiser said the Dallas Police Department has “no active investigation” into the matter, however, because the diocese reported no losses, and thus police determined that “no crime was committed.”