Pope Accepts Resignation of LA Bishop Accused of Sexual Misconduct With a Minor

Pope Francis delivers his message during the Angelus noon prayer in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican on Dec. 16, 2018. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)

Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of a Los Angeles auxiliary bishop, Monsignor Alexander Salazar, following allegations of misconduct with a minor in the 1990s, officials said Wednesday (Dec. 19).

The Vatican announced the resignation in a one-line statement. It was the latest in a string of cases of alleged misconduct against bishops to come to light this year, after the scandal of ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick that exposed how bishops have largely avoided sanction for improper behavior.

The current archbishop of Los Angeles, the Most Rev. Jose Gomez, said the archdiocese was made aware of the claim in 2005. Gomez said prosecutors declined to bring charges, but the archdiocese forwarded the complaint to the Vatican office that handles sex abuse cases.

Gomez said that office, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, imposed precautionary measures against Salazar and that a further investigation by the archdiocese’s independent review board found the allegation to be credible.

Salazar, 69, has “consistently denied any wrongdoing,” Gomez said. The archdiocese said it had received no other allegations against Salazar.

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Source: Religion News Service