CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Leaders in the Catholic Church and the Vatican did not follow up on multiple written concerns regarding the behavior of the former Bishop Michael Bransfield of the Wheeling-Charleston Diocese.
The Washington Post reported Wednesday letters and emails from parishioners from as early as 2012 claimed Bransfield misused finances and abused his power.
Bransfield resigned in September 2018 following allegations of sexual and financial misconduct. This included financial gifts to leaders in the Catholic Church.
Some of Bransfield’s expenses include renovations to his residence and offices, as well as flights using a private jet.
The diocese has denied the allegations.
Following the Washington Post story, West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey against urged the diocese to release its report on Bransfield. Morrisey filed a lawsuit against the diocese in March, which the diocese responded in April with a dismissal motion.
“It is past time for the diocese to come clean. We reiterate our call for the diocese to release all relevant materials, including the Bransfield report. Not only will this allow us to move this matter toward resolution, it is essential for the Church to restore public trust,” Morrisey said.