November 03, 2005

Diocese sells off property; archdiocese settles 43 abuse claims

Catholic Explorer

By Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- The clergy sex abuse crisis continued to have financial, legal and pastoral ramifications for U.S. Catholic dioceses, as one diocese sold off property, another settled some 43 claims after a more than two-year mediation process and a third faced a new claim stemming from an alleged incident in the 1980s.

Property owned by the Diocese of Providence, R.I., at the former Our Lady of Providence Seminary in Warwick Neck was sold for $1.8 million, said Michael Sabatino, the diocese's chief financial officer. Known as the "caretaker's house," the property sits on 10 acres and is separated from the former seminary by a public street.

The property was sold to a private developer planning to subdivide the parcel into lots for private homes. "A condition of the sale was that homes would be consistent with the style present in the neighborhood," Sabatino said.

Assessed for $1.5 million, the property was part of the collateral used to secure a $15 million, three-year line of credit in 2002 used by Providence Bishop Robert E. Mulvee to settle dozens of lawsuits against the diocese brought by victims of clergy sex abuse. The diocese is in the process of renegotiating that line of credit.

Posted by kshaw at November 3, 2005 02:12 PM