Mixed reactions of St. Timothy parishoners regarding abuse allegation

Jan 21, 2013

(PROVIDENCE, RI) Mass was celebrated Sunday at St. Timothy Church in Warwick but a familiar face wasn’t there.  The pastor, Father Barry Meehan, was forced to resign over sex abuse allegations dating back more than 25 years.

St. Timothy Church in Warwick
Credit Flo Jonic

Most parishioners of St. Timothy’s Church didn’t want to comment on the resignation of their pastor, Father Barry Meehan. 

"Oh I don’t have any comment about that."
"I don't know.  We'll have to see what happens won't we?"
"Done. Never mind."   

The diocese not only forced Meehan to resign but stripped him of the right to say the sacraments, because of what it termed a “credible allegation of sexual misconduct” that took place more than 25 years ago. Meehan has denied any wrongdoing.

Two women spoke up on his behalf. One identified herself only as “Patricia.”
"He has only shown us goodness and brought us closer to God. So we love him, we support him, we are certainly sorry for any alleged victim and we will pray for all victims of any abuse."

Also speaking out on Meehan’s behalf was Mary Valletta of Warwick.

Reporter Flo Jonic asked "Can you believe these charges?

Valletta responded "No, I cannot. Not about him. Not at all."

State police are investigating the allegations against Father Meehan.

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