Vatican orders Harlem priest Wallace Harris, accused child molester, to life of penance

New York Daily News

By Larry Mcshane / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

Thursday, February 2, 2012
A prominent Harlem pastor who dodged prison despite charges of molesting 10 high school kids was sentenced to a life of prayer and penance by the Vatican.

Monsignor Wallace Harris, once the highest-ranking black cleric in the Archdiocese of New York, received the lesser of two possible punishments from Rome, said archdiocese spokesman Joe Zwilling.

The popular priest — who arranged Pope Benedict’s jam-packed 2008 Mass in Yankee Stadium — could have been defrocked.

Instead, “he’s living in a church-run facility, under very, very close supervision,” Zwilling said Thursday. “He is not allowed to act as a priest. He is not allowed to present himself as a priest.

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