Dec 13, 2004
HARRISONBURG - Father Jim Gallagher resigned as pastor of Harrisonburg's Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church after admitting "sexual misconduct with an adult woman," the Catholic Diocese of Richmond said yesterday.
The Most Rev. Francis X. DiLorenzo, bishop of the diocese, told parishioners the news before celebrating Mass. The diocese has temporarily suspended Gallagher pending an investigation, the bishop said.
Although Gallagher, 52, has resigned as pastor of the church, he has not left the priesthood, DiLorenzo said.
Gallagher arrived at Blessed Sacrament in June 2003 after serving for seven years at a church in Petersburg. He has been a priest for 17 years.
In his statement to parishioners yesterday, DiLorenzo said the diocese had learned that Gallagher "has admitted sexual misconduct with an adult woman. In the interest of privacy, the diocese will not release the identity of the person involved."