Catholic Diocese of Youngstown
January 1, 2011

USCCB Advisories

The Diocese of Kalamazoo has advised the Conference of its concerns regarding Msgr. Jacob Vellian,

a priest of the Archeparchy of Kottayam, India, of the Syro-Malabar Church. Msgr. Vellian was on

temporary assignment in the Diocese of Kalamazoo in 1973 and 1974, and the diocese has recently

received a complaint of sexual abuse of a minor by Msgr. Vellian during that time period. The matter

has been reported to law enforcement authorities. The Bishop of Kalamazoo referred the relevant

evidence to his diocesan review board and has received its recommendation, and concluded that the

charges regarding Msgr. Vellian have merit. The diocese also relates that Msgr. Vellian has been in

active ministry in the United States in a number of dioceses in the recent past. Further info: Diocese

of Kalamazoo, 269-349-8714.

The Franciscan Friars of the Province of St. Barbara have advised of the status of Fr. Raul Alejos,

formerly a solemnly professed friar priest of the Order of Friars Minor of the Province of St. Barbara.

Fr. Alejos has been canonically dismissed from that Order and is no longer a Franciscan Friar,

although he has not been dismissed from the clerical state. Fr. Alejos has served in the Dioceses of

Oakland, San Jose and San Diego, and is currently said to be in the Diocese of San Diego. The

Provincial Minister advises that Fr. Alejos may be seeking a ministry position in a diocese in the future

and strongly cautions against allowing Fr. Alejos to function as a priest "for the protection of the

People of God." Further info: Fr. John Hardin, OFM, the Provincial Minister, or Fr. Ken Laverone,

OFM, the Vicar Provincial, at 510-536-3722.

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