Concerned Catholics of Guam could sue archbishop


by Jolene Toves

Guam – The Concerned Catholics of Guam organization is contemplating the possibility of filing a class action lawsuit against the head of the island’s Catholic Church over a multimillion dollar transaction. At the heart of the matter is the Redemptoris Mater Seminary – formerly Hotel Accion in Yona.

The property is valued anywhere between $40 million to $70 million . It was thought to be one of the largest assets of the Archdiocese of Agana, but apparently not anymore.

The CCOG was formed last month to investigate and look into recent controversies in the Catholic Church, and within the past few days the organization uncovered the Archdiocese of Agana no longer holds the deed to the seminary.

According to CCOG vice president David Sablan they’ve uncovered a paper trail that leads to Archbishop Anthony Apuron who in November 2011 signed off on a decree that assigns the property to the Redemptoris Mater Seminary Corporation. According to Sablan the archbishop did this without the consent of the Archdiocesan Finance Council and against the advisement of the archdiocese legal counsel. “Because of the way that transfer was going to take place the Archdiocese of Agana and the archbishop himself would generally have no control over that seminary so they advised the archbishop against it,” he explained.

The CCOG uncovered that the paperwork essentially transfers the Yona property from the Archdiocese of Agana to this Redemptoris Mater Seminary Corporation whose mission is to form men for priesthood following the life and practice of the Neocatechumenal Way, which according to Sablan was not the initial intent of the establishment of the seminary. Additionally the property would be under the control of the corporation’s board of which the archbishop sits on, but has little say on decisions.

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