July 12, 2005

Vatican acts against local priest

Seattle Times

By Janet I. Tu
Seattle Times staff reporter

The Rev. James Gandrau, a retired longtime local priest and former editor of the Seattle Roman Catholic Archdiocese's newspaper, has been permanently barred from ministry after allegations of child sexual abuse were found to be credible, the archdiocese announced yesterday.

Gandrau, 72, served in five parishes in the archdiocese from 1958 to 2002.

He is the fifth local priest to be barred from ministry by the Vatican since U.S. bishops passed a policy three years ago that says priests with a single credible allegation of sexual abuse of a minor cannot remain in active ministry.

The archdiocese's press statement did not say how many victims came forward, nor did it include any details of the allegations. Spokesman Greg Magnoni said church officials would not comment further.

Thomas Frey, Gandrau's attorney, said the statement "involves allegations that were made 30 years ago, and Father Gandrau categorically denies ever having molested any child."

Posted by kshaw at July 12, 2005 06:24 AM