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Gale defrocked by Vatican

By Christine Williams
Posted: 10/13/2006

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BRIGHTON -- The Archdiocese of Boston announced Sept. 28 that the Vatican has decreed that Robert Gale is no longer in the clerical state. As a result, he will not receive any financial support from the archdiocese, the archdiocese said in a press release.

Additionally, Gale may no longer perform any priestly ministry, with the exception of absolving a person in the danger of death, the archdiocese said. Gale had been on administrative leave since 1994.

Gale pled guilty to sexually abusing a child at St. Jude Parish in Waltham from 1980 to 1985 and was sentenced to four-and-a-half to five years in state prison by a Massachusetts court in 2004. He was also sentenced to an additional 25 years probation.

Although the charges were filed after the 15-year statute of limitations, the court ruled that when Gale moved to New Hampshire, he temporarily stopped the clock on the statute.

In the archdiocesan statement, Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley reiterated his concern for all persons impacted by the tragedy of sexual abuse, as well as his firm intention to resolve cases of this type as expeditiously as possible, in a manner that is just for all concerned.