March 2, 2020 2:36:03 am
Pope Francis has defrocked Kerala priest Robin Vadakkuncheril who is undergoing 20 years of rigorous imprisonment after a court in 2019 found him guilty of raping and impregnating a minor.
An official communication from the Catholic diocese of Mananthavady, where Vadakkuncheril had worked as a parish priest, on Sunday said the Church had initiated steps to dismiss him from priesthood soon after he was sentenced to imprisonment by a court on February 16, 2019.
Vadakkuncheril had been under suspension since March 2017 after he was arrested on charges of the sexual abuse of a minor girl, who belonged to the parish where he was serving as a priest.
The Vatican had also asked Vadakkuncheril to present his side. On December 5, 2019, the Pope issued the order to defrock Vadakkuncheril. The process of dismissal concluded last month after the diocese of Mananthavady handed over the order to Vadakkuncheril, who is lodged in the Central Prison in Kannur.
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