The Catholic bishop of Buffalo, New York, said he’s sorry for his failures but he won’t be resigning, despite proof that he covered up abuse allegations.
Bishop Richard J. Malone reiterated that he won’t be stepping down after apologizing for his failure to address abuse in the face of growing calls for his resignation. Calls for Malone’s resignation initially arose after 7 Eyewitness News WKBW published an investigative report in August complete with leaked church documents demonstrating that Malone allowed a predatory priest to remain in ministry despite multiple allegations against him. (RELATED: New York And New Jersey Launch Investigations Of Sexual Abuse In Catholic Church)
“First, I must apologize. I apologize once again to those innocent victims who were abused by priests who committed crimes and grave sins. I also apologize for any of my own failures in adequately addressing that abuse,” Malone wrote in an open letter published Saturday, according to The Buffalo News.
“I am convinced that I must continue to lead our diocese forward as your bishop and face this crisis together with clergy, religious and laity. Leaving this diocese in the middle of this daunting challenge would probably be easier for me personally, but I intend to meet it in the best way I can for the next few years, until my retirement in 2021 is accepted by the Holy Father,” he added.
Public officials, a congressman, and a Buffalo business owner and church deacon have all openly called for Malone’s resignation.
Malone’s apology came shortly after the attorneys general of New York and New Jersey announced the launching of new investigations into sexual abuse allegations and the handling of their respective states’ Catholic churches.
Catholic Church officials in New York said they are “ready and eager” to assist authorities in their investigation.
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