Msgr. J. Peter Crynes, a priest of the Diocese of Scranton, was removed from active ministry in May of 2006 following accusations of sexual abuse. As required in this instance, following an investigation, the case was sent to the Holy See for a determination. The office which rendered judgment in this case, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF), has mandated that Msgr. Crynes be permanently removed from all public ministry and relegated to a life of prayer and penance. In reaching this decision, the CDF instructed the Most Reverend Joseph C. Bambera, Bishop of Scranton, to issue a decree imposing this judgment, which is a permanent penalty.
With the imposition of this penalty by decree of the Bishop, the cleric is permanently removed from all public ministry and is relegated to a life of prayer and penance whereby he is forbidden to celebrate Mass publicly or to administer the sacraments. He is not to wear clerical garb; is not to present himself publicly as a priest; and is expected to dedicate his life to praying for victims and repenting of his past offenses.
The Diocese of Scranton directs anyone who has experienced sexual abuse by the clergy or anyone else, to immediately notify local law enforcement authorities. Victims are also encouraged to contact Joan Holmes, Diocesan Victim’s Assistance Coordinator, at (570) 344-5216; or Diocesan Officials, including Reverend Thomas Muldowney, Episcopal Vicar for Clergy, or Teresa Osborne, Chancellor, at (570) 207-2216.
Bishop Bambera is committed to protecting children and to providing support to victims of sexual abuse. In expressing his personal sorrow for the pain suffered by survivors of abuse due to the actions of some members of the clergy, Bishop Bambera requests the faithful of the Diocese to join him in praying for the healing of all victims of abuse.