Accused Pastor Placed on Leave

Associated Press, carried in Hartford Courant
Hartford Courant [Long Island NY]
June 8, 2007,0,1505163.

Garden City, N.Y. -- The pastor of a Roman Catholic parish has been placed on administrative leave amid allegations he sexually abused a 10-year-old boy when he served at a different parish more than a decade ago, a spokesman for the Diocese of Rockville Centre confirmed Thursday.

The diocese has referred the allegations to the Suffolk County district attorney's office and intends to conduct its own investigation, spokesman Sean Dolan said.

A spokesman for District Attorney Thomas Spota confirmed the prosecutors had received a letter from the diocese about the allegations - a procedure that was enacted in the wake of the nationwide church sex abuse scandal five years ago.

Pending the investigations, the Rev. Gerald Twomey, pastor of Our Lady of Fatima Church in Manorhaven, is barred from presenting himself as a priest and cannot celebrate Mass in public, Dolan said.

A priest at Our Lady of Fatima said Twomey was not immediately available to comment.


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