Diocese of Buffalo Accused of New Cover-up, SNAP Calls on other Bishops to Act

Again it seems Buffalo’s bishop is putting children and vulnerable parishioners at risk. A recent news report revealed that Bishop Robert Malone has been keeping an accused priest on the job for roughly nine months. America’s bishops should denounce his behavior and call for immediate discipline if their recent pledges to hold their brother bishops accountable are to have a shred of credibility.

Bishop Richard Malone is letting Fr. Jeffrey Nowak lead a parish “despite allegations of inappropriate contact with children, harassment of a seminarian and . . .perhaps violating the seal of confession” according to WKBW’s investigative team. This open violation of the church’s Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People would be egregious on its own, but the fact that it comes after nearly a year of scandal and lies is even more disturbing. Bishop Malone’s repeated choices to protect reputations over children and the vulnerable is a mockery of the pledges of reform that American bishops have made and deserves immediate intervention from the Vatican.

Bishop Malone’s secrecy has been repeatedly revealed in mainstream news accounts for months on end now. Yet the US Catholic hierarchy remains silent. This must end if the “Metropolitan model” advanced at this year’s US Conference of Catholic Bishops meeting is to have any credibility.

Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Houston, the head of the USCCB, must take action. Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York Citythe state’s highest-ranking church official, must also act. The prelates who head Pope Francis’ US nuncio in Washington D.C. and the USCCB’s child sex abuse committee should join in as well.

If they instead choose to continue their silence, the official US church policy, adopted just weeks ago in Baltimore at the USSCB meeting, should just be torn up and thrown away.

CONTACT: Zach Hiner, Executive Director (517-974-9009, zhiner@snapnetwork.org)

(SNAP, the Survivors Network, has been providing support for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings for 30 years. We have more than 25,000 survivors and supporters in our network. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)


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