Priest Accused of Sexual Harassment Is Reinstated

By Michael Clancy
Arizona Republic
January 26, 2007

One of two Catholic priests who were suspended in June 2005 following allegations of sexual harassment has been reinstated.

The other says he has no interest in returning to the church.

The Revs. Michael Minogue and Ken Van de Ven, longtime friends, were accused of harassment by a young man who worked at Minogue's parish, Our Lady of Lourdes/Prince of Peace in Sun City West. The accuser never went public.

"I guess they did an internal investigation and could not find any substance" to the accusation, said Minogue. "I am just glad to be back serving the church I love."

Van de Ven, former pastor of St. James in Glendale, said he has no desire to fight the bishop over the suspension.

"I have my life and do not want to go back to that life," he said.

Both men left their parish positions for health reasons, the diocese said in 2005. But later, letters from Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted showed up in the church bulletins outlining the harassment charges.

Van de Ven said the diocese had evidence that the allegations were false "a long time ago" but "wanted to get rid of us."


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