Iroquois County: Bishop Puts Priest Back on Administrative Leave
September 18, 2012
According to media reports, Bishop R. Daniel Conlon of the Joliet Diocese, has withdrawn the reinstatement of the Rev. F. Lee Ryan.
Conlon announced last week that Ryan could minister to homebound parishioners of St, Edmund Catholic Church in Watseka and St. Joseph Mission in Crescent City.
In a prepared statement Tuesday, Conlon said, "Subsequent discussions that have occurred since the decision have highlighted that any action needs to fulfill the larger need of the Church to confront the scandal of child abuse in the midst and work to diligently restore trust.
"For the sake of the greater good of the Church, I have decided to revoke my earlier permission and once again place Fr. Ryan on full administrative leave."
Lee was placed on administrative leave from the ministry in May 2010 by then Bishop J. Peter Sartain due to an alleged relationship with a teenager in the 1970s.
According to a Sept. 12 release from the diocese, the case was reviewed by the diocesan Review Committee and then sent to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in Rome, as required by church law. The congregation determined that, under church law in force at the time of the alleged abuse, Father Ryan was not guilty of a grave delict (serious crime) and therefore could not be removed permanently from ministry.
A Florida man has come forward with the accusations he had a relationship with Fr. Ryan for more than a year when the man was 14.
The man, who is 52, did not come forward at the time. He said two years ago he decided to tell his mother about an inappropriate relationship with their family priest.
His then submitted a complaint to the church.