Woonsocket Priest on Administrative Leave for Sex-Abuse Allegation Dating Back 30 Years

By Maria Armental
Providence Journal
February 25, 2013

Monsignor John Allard

WOONSOCKET, R.I. -- The Rev. Monsignor John Allard has been placed on administrative leave, his authority to serve as a priest revoked, "as a result of a credible allegation of sexual misconduct of a minor that allegedly took place more than 30 years ago," Diocese officials said Monday.

Msgr. Allard, most recently assigned to St. Agatha and precious Blood parishes and the Father Marot CYO Center in Woonsocket, "has taken responsibility for his actions and has expressed his profound remorse for the harm he has caused," a news release said.

Diocese officials said "this is the first and only known allegation of abuse" against Msgr. Allard, who was ordained in 1975.

The Rev. Wilfred Gregoire, a senior priest in residence at St. Agatha, will administer the parishes in the interim.

"Allegations of abuse, even if they occurred many years ago, are taken very seriously," Bishop Thomas J. Tobin said. "For the many who are affected by this heartbreaking news, I offer my prayers for healing and forgiveness."

Diocesan officials urge victims of sexual abuse of those with knowledge of such abuse to contact the Rhode Island State Police at (401) 444-1000 or the Diocesan Office of Education and Compliance at (401) 941-0760.


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