The Roman Catholic watchdog group BishopAccountability.org is calling for greater transparency from the Diocese of Providence. The call comes as a second priest in two months is forced to resign for an allegation of child sexual abuse.
Monsignor John Allard has been forced to resign as pastor of St. Agatha and Precious Blood parishes in Woonsocket. The diocese of Providence says it received a credible allegation of child sexual abuse against Allard dating back more than 30 years. The priest has accepted responsibility and expressed remorse, according to the Diocese.
Meanwhile, the group BishopAccountability.org is calling on Providence Bishop Thomas Tobin to release all the names of priests who have been accused of sexual misconduct. Bishop Accountability co-founder Anne Barrett Doyle says the Diocese admitted in court documents to investigating 125 accused priests, but has released the names of only 34.
“This raises a public safety question. Where are these unnamed accused priests working today? Where are they living today? Who are they living near? Are they living near schools? Are they working in summer camps,” says Barrett Doyle
The Diocese of Providence issued a statement saying it takes all allegations against priests seriously and has reported all accusations to police since 1993. The statement did not explain why all of the priests names have not been publicly disclosed.
[Editor's Note: The original story was updated with a response from the Dioceses of Providence.]
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