Priests Accused of Misconduct Barred from Priestly Duties

The Associated Press, carried in [Detroit MI]
December 8, 2005

DETROIT (AP) — The Vatican has concurred with the Archdiocese of Detroit's decision to remove two priests from their ministry due to sex-related misconduct allegations.

C. Richard Kelly, 62, former pastor of St. Thomas a'Becket Catholic Church in Wayne County's Canton Township, was removed from his post in 2004 after an allegation of sexual misconduct with a boy early in his ministry.

In 2003, the diocese also removed Timothy Szott, 58, former pastor of St. Lawrence Catholic Church in Utica, when child pornography was found on his computer. He later pleaded no contest to pornography charges and was sentenced to probation.

"They are now permanently removed from ministry," Ned McGrath, spokesman for the archdiocese, told the Detroit Free Press.

Although the two men technically are still priests, they cannot wear clerical garb or publicly present themselves as priests, Richard Laskos, another diocese spokesman, said Thursday. Laskos would not say where the men now live.

"Let us hope these findings will be helpful in bringing about both resolution and healing for all involved," Monsignor Ricardo Bass, Cardinal Adam Maida's delegate on clergy matters, wrote to priests, The Detroit News reported.