Crisis in the Diocese: a Call for Action

Port Hawkesbury Reporter
September 27, 2010

As most people are aware these days, the Diocese of Antigonish is going through a major financial and credibility crisis following accusation of sexual abuse and the subsequent class action legal and financial settlement.

All of our parishes have had to turn over money to the diocese and we are now in the process of selling off all our assets except for churches and occupied glebe houses. This has been a heart wrenching time for us.

What many people may not know is that the Diocese of Antigonish is the major shareholder in the Casket Printing and Publishing Company of Antigonish and that the board of directors of The Casket recently purchased the adjacent building for around $200,000. We are horrified by this decision. We're selling off all our assets and they're buying more? It may make sense from a business point-of-view, but did no one consider the psychological impact of this purchase on us, the people in the diocese?

In our parish, we lost all of the money we had saved over the years for very necessary repairs to our church all went into the financial settlement fund. We don't know how we are going to pay for these repairs, our church is deteriorating and we don't even know if we'll have a church in two years time. All of our parishes are suffering, many even more severely than us. And meanwhile the diocese, in its wisdom, decides it's okay for The Casket to purchase another building. Unbelievable!

We are calling on all parishes of the Diocese of Antigonish to put pressure on their priests, and in particular our Bishop Brian Dunn, to immediately put the diocese's share of the Casket Printing and Publishing Company up for sale, with the proceeds of the sale to go into the financial settlement fund.

At this crucial time, we need strong leadership by example if the Diocese of Antigonish is ever to regain even a fraction of the credibility it had in the past.

Jean Collins

Marion MacNeil

Ben Druhan

St. Joseph's Parish

St. Joseph's

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