Worcester bishop finally suspends priest

Worcester bishop finally suspends priest

Worcester’s Bishop Robert McManus has finally suspended Fr. James Aquino after he was arrested in a Las Vegas adult bookstore.

The story first broke last week when Worcester Voice and Roman Catholic Faithful posted arrest reports and other information on their web sites. Long story short: Aquino was arrested in Las Vegas a year ago by undercover cops who said they saw him in an adult bookstore engaging in lewd conduct with another man. He allegedly said he had no ID and have false information, but then admitted he was hiding his driver’s license in his shoe. Aquino was a pastor and head of the diocesan permanent diaconate program.

Last month, Aquino got up at his parish, his lawyer by his side, and told parishioners he had “made a mistake” by going into the sex store, but denied being arrested or engaging in any lewd conduct. (If you’re a priest accused of a crime, don’t bring your lawyer to the altar. That’s just tacky.) As usual, the parishioners applauded and cried and declared him the best priest ever.

Written by
Domenico Bettinelli
7 comments
  • As is often the case, Bp McManus heard what he wanted to believe and believed it.  For the foreseeable future, bishops are going to have to be made of sterner stuff.

  • On WRKO this morning, we had that unbiased talk show host, Scott Allen Miller, discussing this with some person from the VOTF.  So the VOTF person got to spew stuff about what good the VOTF is doing in bringing these stories to light.

    Ugh!

  • In this case heterodox VOTF aligned with Stephen Brady of Roman Catholic Faithful to expose the activities of the priest and the cover-up by the Bishop.

    I encourage all to read the details of the story in the Worcetser Telegram & Gazette: how the priest had his driver’s license stuck in his shoe, how he attempted to deceive the police, how the police obeserved the priest performing unspeakable acts on another man for 30 minutes.

    Then read the book of Malachi in the old Testament.

    It all fits together.

  • Remember that this is the same Bishop McManus who comandeered the pulpit of a parish in his diocese to preach the Church’s position on gay marriage after the pastor of that parish had refused to support a Diocesan petition (or fund raiser?) to oppose gay marriage. So he’s not as wishy washy always as he comes off in this sordid affair.

  • First, Fr. Aquino was not “suspended” in the canonical sense but put on “administrative leave.”

    Second, Bishop McManus apparently knew earlier of the exact charges against Fr. Aquino and not when they were made public in October.  According to an article in the November 2, 2005, Worcester Telegram and Gazette (http://www.telegram.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20051102/NEWS/511020378/1116), the Las Vegas district attorney notified the bishop of the exact charges and sent copies of the citation and police report.

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