(PatriotWise.com) — The Diocese of Jefferson City, Missouri, announced on Monday that Father Ignazio Medina was found guilty of soliciting an adult during confession, and disciplinary action would be taken immediately, KOMO reported.
The misconduct was reported in April 2022 to a safe environment hotline set up by the diocese. After reviewing the report, Bishop W. Shawn McKnight launched an investigation into the incident and imposed restrictions on Father Medina, preventing him from hearing confession or being alone with another person while on church property while the investigation was underway.
After the Diocese of Jefferson City investigated the matter, the crime was referred to the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith in Rome in June 2022.
The Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith found Medina guilty on November 27, 2023. Since Medina did not choose to appeal the decision, permanent penalties were put in place.
Medina will no longer be permitted to hear confessions. Additionally, he will not be allowed to celebrate or co-celebrate public Mass without permission from the diocesan bishop. Medina will also be barred from holding an office within the Catholic Church.
Despite being found guilty, Medina will continue serving as a priest with the diocese and will receive support as a retired priest.
The victim who initially reported the misconduct was provided support and assistance from the Diocese throughout the investigation as part of the individual’s healing process.
In its press release, the Diocese of Jefferson City encouraged any parishioner who may have experienced or witnessed similar misconduct in one of its churches to report the incident to the Diocesan Safe Environment Hotline and contact law enforcement.
Father Medina was previously investigated by the FBI for alleged embezzlement.
According to reports, while serving as pastor of St. Stanislaus Parish, Medina allegedly opened a bank account in the parish name from which he paid himself $200,000 and also sent a $100,000 check to an out-of-state sibling.
In a church trial, the judges found Medina guilty of “abuse of ecclesiastical power” for embezzling from St. Stanislaus.
Copyright 2024, PatriotWise.com