Archbishop speaks on Benavente firing

Pacific Daily News

Written by
Gaynor Dumat-ol Daleno
Pacific Daily News

Archbishop Anthony Apuron on Thursday, during a Mass at Father Duenas Memorial School, spoke publicly about his decision to fire Monsignor James Benavente, saying he didn’t fire Benavente “to be mean.”

Benavente was rector at the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica for nearly 20 years and director of Catholic Cemeteries until Apuron fired him last month, alleging poor financial management.

Apuron said, in his 28 years as the archbishop, he “only sought to do the will of God and to follow whatever commands I receive from Rome.”

“And I’m trying to be obedient. And I really do this out of a good conscience; I don’t do it to be vindictive. I don’t do it really to be mean.”

The archbishop acknowledged that he’s been criticized by some in the local Catholic community, including in letters to the Vatican and on blogs.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.