Priest paced on administrative leave by Buffalo Diocese as initial inquiry wraps

August 28, 2019

[with video]

A priest has been placed on administrative leave by the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo as the investigation continues against him.

Rev. Jeffrey Nowak, the pastor of Our Lady Help of Christians Parish in Cheektowaga, was placed on leave by the bishop, effectively immediately, according to a statement from the Diocese.

Nowak is accused of harassing a former seminarian. The accuser, Matthew Bojanowksi, says he filed a complaint in 2018 but claims no action was taken despite a follow-up complaint.

Bojanowski, who stepped down earlier this month from his role as a seminarian and Christ the King, claims Father Jeffrey Nowak sexually harassed him and broke the seal of confession. Nowak has denied the claim that he broke the seal of confession.

´╗┐Earlier this month, the diocese announced that Nowak was being removed from ministry, and that he was directed to undergo a behavioral assessment.

Fr. Jeffrey Nowak was removed from ministry so an initial inquiry could look into previously received complaints. Following the completion of an initial inquiry regarding those complaints, Bishop Richard J. Malone has placed Fr. Nowak on administrative leave, effective immediately, as an investigation continues.

Please note that this administrative leave is for the purpose of investigation and does not imply any determination as to the truth or falsity of the complaints.

Statement from the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo

Bojanowski has called for the resignation of Bishop Richard Malone since announcing his decision to withdraw from the seminary.


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