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Southern Religion

What did the Rev. Kiesle do while Cardinal Ratzinger delayed?

The Rev. Stephen Kiesle remained a priest for years while then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger “bucked pleas from the Oakland, Calif., diocese to defrock him.” The Associated press has obtained a copy of 1985 letter signed by Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict XVI), delaying a decision for “the good of the Universal Church.”

The Contra Costa Times reports:

The letter came five years after Kiesle himself requested removal from the priesthood, and the diocese recommended it to the Vatican, following Kiesle’s no-contest plea in 1978 on a misdemeanor charge for tying up and molesting two preteen boys in the rectory of Our Lady of the Rosary Church in Union City.

Kiesle, now 63 and recently released from prison, lives in the Rossmoor senior community in Walnut Creek and wears a Global Positioning System anklet. He is on parole for a different sex crime against a child. A self-described “Pied Piper of the neighborhood,” he is perhaps the most notorious among dozens of East Bay clergy accused of sex abuse over decades.

Numerous accusers have claimed he abused them as children at Our Lady of the Rosary, Santa Paula (now Our Lady of Guadalupe) in Fremont and Saint Joseph in Pinole, where he served in the mid-1970s, then returned in 1985 to volunteer as a youth minister.

What comprehensible “good” was there in delay of a decision on this this?

[H/T: Eric Bugyis]

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April 10, 2010 Posted by | Catholic, children, Crime, Pope Benedict XVI | , , , | 2 Comments