March 18, 2006

8 clergymen are dismissed by the Vatican

Boston Globe

By Michael Levenson and Charles A. Radin, Globe Staff | March 18, 2006

The Vatican has dismissed eight Boston-area clerics accused of sexually abusing children, including a monsignor who for two decades was the third-most-powerful official in the Catholic Archdiocese of Boston in addition to six other priests and a deacon, church officials said yesterday.

Dismissal from the ministry, which takes effect immediately, means that the men will no longer receive financial support from the archdiocese or be allowed to perform most of the public functions of a Catholic priest.

The eight had served for decades across Greater Boston, in schools, jails, hospitals, and churches. Among them was the former vice chancellor of the archdiocese, Monsignor Frederick J. Ryan, who was accused in 2002 of having repeatedly taken two students in the early 1980s from Catholic Memorial High School in West Roxbury to the chancery and molesting them. He is the highest-ranking priest to be dismissed since the clergy sexual abuse scandal erupted in 2002.

Ordained in 1964, Ryan had a long career, serving in churches in Holliston and Hyde Park and at the chancery from 1974 to 1995, where he served under Cardinal Bernard F. Law. In 2002, allegations surfaced from two victims who said that Ryan had abused them while they were students at Catholic Memorial. He resigned in April of that year from St. Joseph Parish in Kingston, where he was serving as pastor.

Posted by kshaw at March 18, 2006 06:59 AM