It’s the morning of Friday, Aug. 2, and Bishop Richard J. Malone hasn’t slept for two nights.
“We are in a true crisis situation,” Malone said. “True crisis. And everyone in the office is convinced this could be the end for me as bishop. It could force me to resign if in fact they make a story…”
Malone is at his sprawling residence on Buffalo’s East Side for a one-on-one meeting with his trusted secretary, Rev. Ryszard Biernat, and the embattled bishop is concerned about a brewing story regarding Christ the King Seminary, allegations of love letters and claims of sexual harassment by a diocesan priest.
“I think we’re gonna blow this story up into something like an atom bomb if we start talking about that. You know?” Malone said to Biernat. “Cause then it sounds like, it sounds like a soap opera. It sounds like a love triangle. And you know what the media can do with that.”
The story Malone was referring to involves Biernat, seminarian Matthew Bojanowski and Rev. Jeffrey Nowak, pastor of Our Lady Help of Christians Church in Cheektowaga. The bishop makes it clear he doesn’t want the full story to get out.
“With all the else that’s going on in the diocese and all the, all the attacks on my credibility…that I’ve known that something’s going on here that shouldn’t be and I let it go…I mean this is a disaster,” Malone said.
A transcript of the recordings can be found at the link. You can hear the tapes below. It’s unclear who recorded the tapes or how WKBW obtained them, but Specht notes: “The I-Team has also learned that multiple audio tapes have been reviewed by FBI agents as part of the bureau’s criminal investigation into the Diocese of Buffalo, which is ongoing.”
UPDATE: The bishop gave a news conference this afternoon and restated his intention to stay in office.
Bishop Richard Malone held a press conference Wednesday to address on going issues within the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo.
Malone reiterated that he has no plans on resigning. He repeatedly says he’s not a masochist, but continues to say he believes a majority of WNY Catholics support him and want him to stay on as Bishop.
Prior to Wednesday press conference, Malone had not addressed the press since August 13, where he issued a video and written apology to the victim-survivors of priest sex abuse on behalf of the Diocese of Buffalo. Malone spoke with 2 On Your Side’s Maryalice Demler in November 2018, but has refused interviews with our reporters since then.
Congressman Brian Higgins told the press Wednesday morning that Bishop Richard Malone needs to resign. Higgins said Malone led a conspiracy to protect the abuser of kids and to shun abused kids of the Catholic Dioceses.
He also said he has spoken to the papal nuncio about the situation in Buffalo, but has not spoken with the pope directly.