The National Catholic Reporter reported yesterday:

Father Pavone also told CNS he has already explored the possibility of being incardinated in another diocese so he could resume full-time ministry with Priests for Life as soon as possible.

As did Amarillo Globe News :

Pavone expressed confidence that his stay in Amarillo will be temporary and that he and Zurek can work out their differences.

But he also seems certain his ties to Amarillo may be short-lived.

“I do not foresee myself staying incardinated in Amarillo,” he said. “It’s a sensitive issue. We’re working it out behind the scenes. But I say that in light of the bishop’s apparent unwillingness to let me do pro-life work full time. I will seek that elsewhere.”

In the interesting AGN interview video below, FP indicates these scuffles with bishops all boil down to reticence about his vocation: pro-life work, which he also intimated in a September 13 CBS piece:

“It’s an astonishment and bewilderment,” Pavone said of Zurek’s letter. “What does it take to allow a priest, a group of priests, to do pro-life work full -time?”


The Amarillos diocese is sending mixed signals, appearing to back-pedal in the NCR piece yesterday morning :

Msgr. [Harold] Waldow told Catholic News Service Sept. 13 that Bishop Patrick Zurek only suspended Father Pavone’s ministry outside of the diocese because the well-known pro-life priest is needed for work in Amarillo.

… but stepping up demands by last evening, quoting Amarillo Globe News:

Amarillo’s Roman Catholic bishop called for financial transparency not only from Priests for Life… but also from two other nonprofits associated with a popular pro-life priest.

Bishop Patrick J. Zurek has demanded that the Rev. Frank Pavone… produce documentation for how donations have been handled by the… charity’s affiliates Rachel’s Vineyard and Missionaries of the Gospel of Life, said Monsignor Harold Waldow….

Recall Bishop Zurek’s original letter to fellow bishops called FP back to Amarillo due to concerns about financial at PFL (as well as concerns FP was getting too big for his britches):

There have been persistent questions and concerns by clergy and laity regarding the transactions of millions of dollars of donations to the PFL from whom the donors have a rightful expectation that the monies are being used prudently. These financial questions and concerns have persisted with no clear and adequate answers since the time when Father Pavone was under two previous bishop ordinaries. Since he has consistently refused to subject the PFL to a transparent and complete auditing of all expenditures, I have reasons to be alarmed at the potential financial scandal that might arise if it were the result of my failure to correct Father Pavone’s incorrigible defiance to my legitimate authority as his Bishop. Additionally, the PFL financial resources have afforded Father Pavone with a formidable civil and canonical counsel which he utilized to rebuff my every attempt at calling for financial transparency.

But in his response letter to bishops, Fr. Pavone listed over 40 financial documents PFL has provided Bishop Zurek (list on right, click to enlarge), plus check registries – all with no acknowledgement of receipt .

Meanwhile, FP has issued a new statement, and a canon lawyer has weighed in with interesting thoughts.

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