May 16, 2005

Priest removed over ethical violations in prison ministry

Portsmouth Herald

By Norma Love
Associated Press

MACHIAS, Maine - A Roman Catholic priest and former state prison chaplain has been removed over ethical violations in his ministry at the Washington County jail, the Diocese of Portland said Saturday.

The Rev. Michael Sheridan, who was administrator of Holy Name Parish in Machias and St. Michael Mission in Cherryfield, was directed to return to his home diocese in Worcester, Mass., immediately. He already had planned to return to Worcester this summer.

The Diocese of Portland will give a full report to the Worcester diocese, which will decide whether and how to discipline him, said Sue Bernard, spokeswoman for the Diocese of Portland.

Jail officials reported the misconduct last weekend and a church investigation verified the complaint. Bernard said the diocese could not discuss the nature of the violations because it was a personnel matter. She did not know whether the violations would result in any criminal charges.

Posted by kshaw at May 16, 2005 11:00 AM