March 17, 2005

Accused priest crosses Catholic diocese line

Brownsville Herald

The Brownsville Herald

March 17, 2005 — Evidence of sexual misconduct committed by a former Rio Grande Valley priest was the grounds for his dismissal from the Brownsville diocese but did not prevent him from celebrating Mass in Matamoros just last month.

The Monsignor Ivan M. Rovira was discharged from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brownsville in 2002 by Bishop Raymundo J. Peña, after officials determined that the monsignor had been involved in sexual misconduct.

“We did discover evidence that these allegations were substantiated,” the Rev. Heberto M. Diaz Jr. said Wednesday at a news conference organized by the diocese. “So then he was removed from ministry immediately.”

Rovira’s dismissal means he can no longer celebrate or conduct a Catholic Mass in any country.

On Feb 23, he was present among hundreds of other priests from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brownsville and the Diocese of Matamoros to celebrate Faustino Armendariz Jimenez’s installation as bishop of Matamoros.

Posted by kshaw at March 17, 2005 07:44 AM