May 23, 2006

Second Roman Catholic priest resigns amid investigation


STAMFORD, Conn. -- A priest hired to replace a pastor accused of using church money to pay for a lavish lifestyle with another man has resigned, admitting he was the one who hired a private investigator to look into the pastor.

Bishop William Lori said he agreed to the request Tuesday by the Rev. Michael Madden to resign as acting administrator of St. John Church in Darien. Madden was appointed last week to replace the Rev. Michael Jude Fay in response to suspicions of financial wrongdoing. Fay resigned last week.

Vito Colucci Jr., an investigator based in Stamford, said he documented at least $200,000 in church money Fay spent on limousine rides, dinners at famous restaurants, cruises and gifts. Local and federal authorities are investigating Fay, who has not been charged.

Madden admitted Tuesday that he and the parish bookkeeper hired the private investigator with their own money even while working with the diocese in connection with its own probe of Fay.

Posted by kshaw at May 23, 2006 09:13 PM