Diocese Suspends Former Dallas Priest Accused in Sex Cases Man Has Left Nm Treatment Facility, Moved to California

By Todd J. Gillman and Judith Lynn Howard
Dallas Morning News
December 17, 1993

A former Dallas priest accused of molesting young boys has left a New Mexico treatment facility, and church officials said Thursday that he no longer will be allowed to work as a priest.

Father Rudolph Kos, who along with the Catholic Diocese of Dallas faces lawsuits from five alleged victims, has moved to California, said church attorney Randal Mathis.

Bishop Charles Grahmann, head of the diocese, also took the grave measure under church law of suspending Father Kos, whose precise whereabouts were not known Thursday.

"This is a very significant move on the part of the Dallas diocese, and . . . somewhat unusual," Mr. Mathis said. "Suspension doesn't mean what it does in school, where you're suspended as a kid and you come back in three days. It means what you and I think of as being fired."

The move, Mr. Mathis said, "effectively prohibits him working as a priest anywhere. . . . This does preclude him from working in another diocese."

Church officials said Father Kos has not formally requested to be reduced to a lay state, known as laicization under canon law.

Father Kos previously submitted a "letter of resignation," an instrument that Mr. Mathis said has no effect under church law.

With Bishop Grahmann's action, Mr. Mathis said, Father Kos "is suspended from performing priestly functions. . . . A letter of resignation really is a little bit out of place under the terminology of the church" and "doesn't relieve him of his vows."

Father Kos had been receiving inpatient treatment at the Servants of the Paraclete, a church counseling center in New Mexico for pedophilia clergy.

"He will be under the continuing care and supervision" of that center, Mr. Mathis said. "I don't know whether from a medical point of view he continues to need treatment. . . . I am told that although he is no longer an inpatient there, he is still receiving treatment."

A trial in the lawsuits is scheduled to begin May 2 in Dallas.

Father Kos recently began representing himself after his attorney, Hal Browne, removed himself from the case Nov. 29, citing the church's decision not to provide funds for Father Kos' defense.

In May, two men known in court papers as John Doe I and II, sued Father Kos, alleging that he sexually abused them while he was assistant pastor at St. Luke's Catholic Church in Irving between 1985 and 1988 and while he was pastor at St. John Nepomucene Church in Ennis from 1988 to 1992.

Two other plaintiffs, a young man and a boy, joined the suit in July, and a fifth plaintiff filed suit in October.

Father Kos has refused to testify in depositions, citing clergy confidentiality and his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

Father Kos told his mother in early September that he intended to resign from the priesthood.

Dolores Hosford said in a recent interview that Father Kos told her he is innocent and that he was distressed about the allegations.

"It hurts when you are accused of something like that because you lose your own faith," she said, adding that her son was exhausted by parish duties and on the verge of a nervous breakdown before seeking counseling.

He was trying to "get his life straightened out so that he can decide what his future might be," Mrs. Hosford said. "And this place where he's at seems to be helping him a whole lot. He has a lot of confidence in it."

Mrs. Hosford said she believes her son wanted to resign because he did not want to be a priest with accusations clouding his ministry.

"No wonder he wants to quit," she said. "They would look at him with accusations. They would have that in their minds."

At Servants of the Paraclete, priests in counseling may attend Mass but are forbidden to minister at any parish in the archdiocese.


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