Reversal: Accused Joliet priest who was returned to ministry is removed … again

You may remember this item from last week.  Well…the priest is now, once again, out:

The Rev. F. Lee Ryan has been removed from public ministry again.

Ryan, 79, who has been accused of inappropriate relations with a minor four decades ago, was put back into limited ministry last week after a ruling from the Vatican based on church law.

But Bishop R. Daniel Conlon announced Tuesday that he has decided to put Ryan back on “full administrative leave.”

In a written statement, Conlon said, “Last week I announced that Father F. Lee Ryan would be permitted to exercise a very narrow priestly ministry. Subsequent discussions that have occurred since that decision have highlighted that any action needs to fulfill the larger need of the Church to confront the scandal of child abuse in its midst and diligently restore trust.

“For the sake of the greater good of the Church, I have decided to revoke my earlier permission and once again place Fr. Ryan on full administrative leave.”

Conlon said he would “initiate further conversations with the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith,” the panel in Rome that found Ryan not guilty based on a church law in place at the time of the alleged abuse. That law refers to discipline against priests who engage in adultery or improper touching with people under the age of 16.

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