ST. BONAVENTURE, NY -- Buffalo Bishop Richard J. Malone labeled St. Bonaventure University President Dr. Dennis DePerro's call for his resignation “unjust.”
In a release issued Friday on behalf of the bishop, diocesan spokeswoman, Kathy Spangler stated, “Bishop Malone is disappointed and dismayed with the comments of Dr. DePerro. We suspect that Dr. DePerro has not fully studied the carefully developed and well-publicized protocols of the Diocese of Buffalo. The bishop has received helpful input from others, including the President of Canisius College and other members of the Movement to Restore Trust, on how diocesan procedures might be improved. The bishop would have welcomed and still would accept such input from Dr. DePerro, but to criticize the bishop for following established protocols is unjust.”
In response to the diocese’s statement, Tom Missel, the university’s chief communications officer, told TAPinto Greater Olean, “Dr. DePerro understands and respects the bishop’s desire to respond to his position, but won’t comment any further on it.”
DePerro called for Malone to step down from his duties during an interview with The Bona Venture, St. Bonaventure’s campus newspaper on Thursday. DePerro made the same comment to WKBW’s Charlie Specht Thursday night, and the university released a statement Friday morning.
“I admire (Malone’s) unflinching desire to repair the damage this crisis has caused, but sometimes, the most courageous thing a man can do is to step aside and recognize that his voice is no longer being heard and that he stands in the way of creating true resolution,” DePerro said.
The on-going dialogue between Malone and DePerro comes after the names of 25 more priests accused of sexual abuse surfaced on Wednesday night following an investigation by WKBW’s I-Team. Two of the names on the new list included deceased members of the Order of Friars Minor who had previously worked at St. Bonaventure: the Rev. Gervase White and the Rev. James (Cairnan) Haggerty.
White’s inclusion on the list was acknowledged by the diocese in the same statement by Spangler on Friday.
“The name of Fr. Gervase White, O.F.M, a beloved member of the St. Bonaventure community, was improperly revealed on television even though the allegation against him does not involve child abuse and cannot be investigated because Fr. Gervase died 17 years ago. Following established protocols, the diocese intentionally did not publicize that allegation.”
This story is ongoing and will be updated.
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